Robin Hood

Breakfast Thieves

Shop 1, 420 Gore St, Fitzroy

Outside Logo

He Says
There is nothing quite like going out with your friends for Sunday brunch. You can dissect Saturday night’s shenanigans, analyse the previous week’s affairs, and just enjoy a good little chat. To facilitate these cherished moments, Melbourne has exploded in recent years with an armada of cafes wanting a slice of the action. Your block/street/suburb just hasn’t made it until there’s a queue of people waiting to get in.

Breakfast Thieves is a newish addition to the brunch scene for Fitzroy. Hiding out in the bottom of a converted warehouse, down a pokey, car unfriendly laneway, you couldn’t ask for a better brunch location. The expansive communal table outside would be perfect for the summer months, but the grey clouds of July certainly aren’t as welcoming. Regardless of the weather outside, the inside is cozy, in an industrial café kind of way. The 6 of us ended up taking up one end of the large communal table, and although we were seated pretty quickly, there aren’t that many tables. Make sure you get in quickly to steal one of them.

Inside Shot

She Says
I’m going to tell you a secret. Well not really a secret, more just a thing that is true but I haven’t mentioned on the blog before. That’s almost a secret right? I’m on a pre-wedding diet at the moment. I’ve actually been on a diet for a few months now. There are a number of downsides to being on a strict diet, but as far as I can see the two worst things are:

  1. You can’t eat anything at a lot of restaurants. If you do eat anything at most restaurants you will then consumed with so much guilt that any deliciousness is quickly forgotten.
  2. You will hate seeing other people eat things that you can’t. If you’re anything like me, it will be a hatred which is out of all proportion with the crime of eating a croissant.

Sounds like fun doesn’t it? Like all things that are not necessarily fun but ultimately good for you though, there are lots of ways to get through it. In this case some options include:

  1. Only ever going out for breakfast or lunch and only to places where you can order poached eggs (with some sort of wholemeal toast if you’re feeling calorific).
  2. Becoming a recluse.

My personal solution has been mainly option 2 with a little of option 1 thrown in when I can’t avoid seeing friends for another week. So with that in mind when we caught up with some friends on the weekend we headed to Breakfast Thieves. The new-ish cafe in a Fitzroy backstreet has a cool (and very on trend) semi-industrial cafe fit out which I appreciated and a stellar brunch menu. I will definitely be back to try some other dishes post-diet.

We Ate

I had the boring  relatively healthy option of poached eggs on multigrain toast ($9.5) with a side of roast tomatoes ($3.5). There’s not a lot you can say about poached eggs and toast, but I can say that I was mighty impressed by the roast tomatoes (both the size and taste). It’s probably because they weren’t as healthy as they sound.

Pouched Eggs

My BFF had the Leprechaun – corn & basil fritters on cauliflower puree and peas with poached eggs and mini avocado toast ($18). Out of jealousy I didn’t ask how it tasted, but it certainly looked like the pick of meals we ordered. This has headed straight to the top of my post-diet brunch hit-list.

The Leprechaun

Her husband ordered the Goldilocks – vanilla and honey porridge ($11.5) with added banana and walnut ($3.5). The porridge was  well received

Goldilocks

A couple of our other friends ordered a Thieves on the Run to share – a breakfast roll with bacon, cheddar omelette, rocket and tomato relish ($11.5). This was apparently very tasty.

Thieves on the run

Gerard ordered the Mr Benedict ($15.5), ham, poached free range eggs with hollandaise sauce on sourdough toast, with a side of chorizo ($4.5). He had no idea that he was ordering a Mount Fuji amount of ham, and, in a real first for this blog, he was actually not able to finish the meal. Was there too much ham? He’ll never admit to it, but I think the answer is yes.

Mr Benedict

 

All up
A nice fit out and an interesting menu with something for everyone (even people on annoying diets). A stand out brunch all round.

Breakfast Thieves on Urbanspoon

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Mother’s Day

Meatmother

167 Swan St, Melbourne VIC 3121

Lights & Alcohol

He Says
My mother was out of town for Mother’s Day, so as a homage to her I decided to go to Meatmother for dinner.  Well, that’s what I’m telling myself now, but I’m sure she’d approve of a place dedicated to the worship of meat.

Meatmother has opened up near the corner of Swan St and Church Street in Richmond; an area not necessarily brimming with quality restaurants (Demitri’s Feast being the exclusion).  The narrow restaurant is divided into a rather modern looking bar/eating area downstairs, and a dining area upstairs. Although I was a little annoyed initially to have been seated downstairs, it turned into a blessing in disguise when I discovered that @beergirlbites was behind the bar. It was one of those awkward moments when I wanted to mention that I recognized her from the Internet, but it sounded awkward enough in my head to not bring it up.

IMG_2967

I ate

I was lucky enough to visit Meatmother with one of my good friends, who’s almost as big a glutton as me, and his girlfriend. As a result, we ordered all the sides.

Rib Tips ($6) were a saucy delight, which I proceeded to drop all over the table. If it weren’t for the next item, this would have been the standout starter.

Rib Tips

The Hock Croquettes ($6) were mind blowingly good. I hadn’t really read the menu item correctly, so when I bit in I wasn’t expecting the meat explosion that greeted me.

Hock Croquettes

BBQ Chicken Wings ($6) were also lip lickingly good.

Chicken Wings

We also ordered a side of the house pickles ($5), but I was too enamored by the other dishes at this point to photograph them.

The main dishes are served in trays, and after you select your meat type, you get to select a side. We went with two trays of beef brisket ($19) and pulled pork ($19), with sides of BBQ beans, mac cheese and gravy mash.

Pulled Pork

Beef Brisket

Beef Brisket with BBQ Beans

My brisket was amazing, as were the BBQ beans. Even if you don’t have the room for the starters, you can’t go wrong with the brisket. They also do matched beers and cocktails but unfortunately I was driving, so I didn’t get a chance to indulge. Luckily I was able to drown my sorrows in Frozen Lime Pie .

Frozen Lime Pie

To Conclude
If you enjoy your meat, nobody does it better than your Meatmother.

Meatmother on Urbanspoon

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Gertrude St Trendy

De Clieu

187 Gertrude St Fitzroy

External De Clieu Shot

She Says

My best friend recently moved to East Melbourne so we’ve been slowly moving through cafes within walking distance. One of the first places we visited was De Clieu. We went on a weekend back during the great heatwave of February (or was it March? Yes, this post has been sitting in our drafts folder for a while now) and I enjoyed everything about my brunch experience. Well, everything other than the heat. It was 30-something degrees outside and about 9000 degrees inside. Luckily that won’t be a problem again for another 8 months.

I like that De Clieu has a relaxed atmosphere, great service and an interesting brunch menu full of items which are just a little bit more exciting than the standard cafe breakfast offerings. I also love those window sills that you can sit in. I think that I am actually in love with them. Excuse me while I go and pin 17 photos of people sitting in window sills and cry a little bit about how I’m never going to be able to recreate that in a first floor apartment.

Internal Shot

He says

Just when you think that Gertrude Street has been completely over saturated with cool, along comes De Clieu. Opposite the painfully trendy TITLE, De Clieu explodes out onto the street with a wonderful blend of outdoor tables and wide open windows into the shop.

Walking in, I was sort of expecting a level or pretentiousness exuded by some of the other establishments on the street , but the staff were exceedingly friendly, and very attentive. And we weren’t even dressed the part. The service was quick, and we were constantly getting refills of water, but i suspect this was mainly due to it being hotter than the sun inside. 10 days straight of over 30 Melbourne, you will not be missed.

We Ate

I had the pancakes with figs, mint, maple syrup, marscarpone and bacon ($16.50 for the pancakes and sides other than bacon, $3.50 for the bacon). Anytime I see pancakes with bacon and maple syrup, I must have them. Sort of like when I was a little kid and saw a new matchbox car at the milkbar (remember either of those things, kids?). De Cleiu added a bit of underground trendy to the dish with some fig. The presentation was a little on the “dumped together” side, but plating isn’t really a priority when you’re serving the holy trinity of gluttony. Everything about it was spectacular, and I even ate the figs.

Bacon and maple syrup pancake

Marg had the roast tomato bruschetta with parsnip puree, proscuitto and fetta ($15.50). Again, the parsnip puree added something a little different which really made this dish memorable.

Prosciutto, with tomatoes on toast

 To Conclude

Great service and food that is simple but a little bit exciting. Also some great window sills.

De Clieu on Urbanspoon

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Fond Memories

Fonda Mexican – Windsor

44 Chapel St, Windsor

Fonda Windsor Interior

Almost a year and half ago, Fonda Mexican burst onto the Melbourne Mexican scene like a delicious overstuffed piñata. The tiny Swan Street Richmond storefront was soon overrun with diners, and even after expanding into the adjacent shop, the queues routinely stretch out the door. Unless you are blessed with the opportunity of a visit outside of traditional hours, you are going to be queuing.

Fonda Windsor

Fast-forward to today and the folks at Fonda have opened up a sister restaurant in Windsor, which dwarfs its Richmond sibling. The expansive double storefront at the good end of Chapel Street is significantly larger, with a lovely downstairs dining area, and a bar at the top for some cheeky late night drinks (liquor licence coming soon). The attention to detail hasn’t been lost in the transition, with the kitchen area-looking picture perfect and funky string-backed booths lining the walls.

We Ate
Normally this is the part of the review where we’d jump into each of the dishes, but considering the menu is almost exactly the same as the Richmond store, and the quality was just as great as our last visit , I might forgo that and just leave you with the drool worthy photos instead.

The kangaroo fillet burrito ($14.5):

KANGAROO FILLET BURRITO

The chopped beef burrito ($14):

CHOPPED BEEF

Braised pork taco and beef taco ($6 each):

BRAISED PORK

Charred corn ($4):

CHARRED CORN

To Conclude
For those too scared to venture north of the Yarra, Fonda Mexican has arrived at Windsor and you won’t be disappointed.

Fonda Mexican on Urbanspoon

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