Code Black Coffee
15-17 Weston Street,
+61 3 9381 2330
643-645 Sydney Road
+61 3 9386 0440
Melbourne is truly a coffee mecca. The city recently hosted the International Coffee Expo, there are specialty coffee cafes galore and roasteries are becoming the trend. Code Black Coffee is a roastery café in Brunswick and it is sexy as. Tan, dark and black with the heady seductive perfume of roasting coffee beans, now that is one way to get my attention.
The Angmoh, Fakebooo and I found ourselves here one day for brunch. Our houseblend coffees were aromatic and had notes of dark chocolate and macadamia. The brunch dishes were far more exciting.
(Left) Huon smoked salmon, potato aioli, fried capers and heirloom tomatoes with toasted multigrain $17.90
Add poached egg $3
(Right) Artichoke and zucchini fritters with peas, poached egg, mint and preserved lemon $16.90
Add chorizo $3
Fakebooo found himself ordering zucchini fritters with peas, poached egg and chorizo. He enjoyed the pea puree and didn’t quite need the chorizo. The Angmoh had a generous serve of smoked salmon and aioli on toast. There was a slight confusion as his dish was originally served with crispbread. We later found out that there were 2 circulating menus, one with the croutons and one with toast. The staff replaced his dish with the requested toast without any fuss.
I reckoned I had the winner brunch dish for that day. Awarded “Australia’s Best Toasted Sandwich 2012”, it was not quite a sandwich but man it was delicious. The crispy polenta cake was stuffed with stretchy melting mozzarella, the mushrooms were drizzled with truffle oil and the lovely creamy mustard emulsion bound it all together. I was tempted to lick my plate clean.
After brunch, we trudged up Sydney Road in search of Lebanese sweets, only to find the famous El Fayha under renovations with the signage displaying another name. Nevertheless, we bought some baklava from A1. They were pretty good, crisp and light without having soaked up too much syrup.
The North has a burgeoning food scene and I think I may have to adventure this way more often!
Shop 3/4 Avoca Street
+61 3 9866 7522
It’s been a while since I caught up with Long Legs (pun intended). It was she who introduced me to jogging the Tan several years ago and I was ridiculously and embarrassingly unfit those days. We decided to have a brunch session but not before getting some morning exercise. This time round, I managed to pace her although I do suspect our speed was not quite at her optimum. Gah, I hate being short.
The Angmoh picked us up and zipped us a few blocks into South Yarra. We were soon seated at Café Gaia, with the Sausage at my feet, copping some of my breakfast.
We started off with coffees for The Angmoh and I and a chai latte for Long Legs. The beans are from Proud Mary’s “Angel Wings” and produce a deliciously floral and light coffee. Long Legs found her latte to be lacking in spice.
Having visited Café Gaia previously, The Angmoh knew what he wanted. There are only 3 places where he gets his craving for Dukkah Eggs satisfied, with Bluebird Espresso being one of them, and Café Gaia another. Long Legs had her eye on that as well, while I chose beans and fried eggs on cornbread.
Once again, The Angmoh had no complaints about his dish. He particularly liked the smoked trout. My dish was delicious, albeit slightly on the sweet side. The cornbread was dense but easily soaked up the spicy sauce and runny yolks. As my companions chatted on about politics and outdoor activites, I entertained myself by sneaking the Sausage bits of cornbread, beans and egg. He too, enjoyed it thoroughly.
We decided to be a little indulgent and split the blackforest pancakes. The pancakes were fluffy and the sour cherry compote retained its tangy juices. The rich dark chocolate was just starting to melt from the heat of the pancakes. It was perfect.
Shrouded in foliage and away from a busy main road, Café Gaia is a wonderful retreat to satisfy the tummy and nourish the soul.