Melbourne is all about great brunches and great coffee. Every person we speak to has strong opinions on their favourite place. And every suburb is bursting at the seams with local stalwarts and hidden gems. For us to narrow the list down to a Top 4 was difficult indeed.
So here is our list. We based it on places we keep returning to no matter where we are.
688 Queensberry Street, North Melbourne
Super-stuffed sandwiches and scrumptious sweets, it’s no wonder we keep trudging down Queensberry Street to get our fix of owner and pastry chef extraordinaire Nat Paull’s food. With one meat and one veggie option available in large or small sizes, the menu is small but perfectly formed. There are a few other brunch items available, but trust us – it’s all about the quirkily named ciabattas. Try to leave room for dessert – cheesecakes, meringues and rich sponges all vie for attention. The Allpress coffee makes for a pretty good accompaniment, too.
60 Nicholson Street, Abbotsford
This place had us at hello. Or rather, hello, here is your poached eggs, prosciutto, truffle oil and grano padano on sourdough toast. A great brunch menu that roams from Turkish pides and meaty sandwiches to French toast and hot cakes. All well executed (ok, we haven’t managed to eat all of them) and best enjoyed with lashing of Five Senses coffee from the custom-made Synesso. A bright space with a funky interior, we just can’t wait for Three Bags Full’s sister to grace Church Street in Richmond. Watch this space…
120 Hardware Street, CBD
A decent brunch/lunch stop in the city? Why yes, look no further than the crowds gathering outside this petit laneway haunt. Smiling staff find room for hungry city workers from 7am to 3:30pm, and own much of their success is down to the delicious and affordable menu. This isn’t run-of-the-mill brunch fare, even if some of the offerings look familiar – this is a cut above – especially the oozing goat’s cheese omelette and baked eggs. Come midday, opt for Moorish lamb, pork belly spiced up with Asian flavours or duck terrine. Grab a magazine hanging on the wooden ladder and perch wherever you can find space – at the long wooden table, white circular tables and plastic chairs, or the kitchen counter. Supreme coffee comes with a mini doughnut. Yum.
156 Pakington St, Kew
This little gem opened mid-year and quickly jumped onto many of the radars of Melbourne’s brunch set. It was conceived by a couple of friends and set up in the perfect location – away from the competition and with a willing local customer base. For those of us with dreams of owning a small brunch destination, the team here have showed us how to do good coffee (a specially created blend by Proud Mary), food and service, with great atmosphere. Feast on veggies plucked straight from the large garden outback, as well as pancakes, sandwiches and pasta dishes – you won’t leave disappointed.
So do you agree with this list? Are there better places we have missed? Let the discussions begin.
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