276 Brunswick Street
+61 3 9419 5564
I’ve kinda fallen off the bandwagon keeping up with Melbourne’s newest eateries. There’s always something new and something delicious and I’ll be honest, I’ve gotten jaded. And I also want to re-visit some of the places that I’ve previously been to. There’s just too many places to check out, too many new dishes to try and my ever-expanding wishlist simply can’t keep up.
Fakebooo told me about Stagger Lee’s and that it was opened by the people behind Proud Mary. Now Proud Mary is one café that I’ll always find time to re-visit and even battle the crazy queues on weekends. The coffee is consistently superb and the brunch fare generously portioned and oh-so-yummy. Stagger Lee’s, I imagine, will definitely not disappoint.
Located in a suburb shadowed by her older sis, (seriously where does Fitzroy end and Collingwood start anyway?!) Staggers Lee is an unassuming café on Brunswick Street. From the outside, it looks like a typical neighbourhood café, unpretentious and far from hipsterish. But step inside, and welcome to the world of naked light bulbs and single origin coffees.
Initially crushed that our favourite Proud Mary blends were not available (Angel Wings for Fakebooo, Eagle Vision for myself), we let the barista guide us as to which single origin bean was better with milk. The Brazilian brew promised notes of red cherry, sweet vanilla and creamed honey and within my magic I found hints of melon and caramel. Fakebooobooo (FBB) had a soy chai, which was extremely spicy.
The food menu is inspiring and not just a cut-and-paste from the Collingwood café. Both Fakebooo and I had a slight internal debate while FBB cut straight to the chase with a sweet breakfast dish. In the end, Fakebooo chose a tasty number of corned beef with braised tender Tuscan cabbage. It had all the important food groups and nailed the presentation and taste factors, leaving Fakebooo pretty satisfied.
As for myself, I had tossed up between grilled asparagus with cashew cheese and mushrooms on truffled polenta. I don’t even know why I had to choose, it was pretty much a no brainer that I’d order the latter. It was perfection, with the meaty pine mushrooms sitting atop soft creamy polenta, all in a haze of truffle perfume.
FBB hit the brunch jackpot with his Cocopops French toast. It was an insane concoction of thick-cut buttery brioche topped with sweet vanilla ice cream. This was then slathered over with lush caramel, complete with a sprinkling of honeycomb and Cocopops. The chocolatey rice cereal added great texture and brought back kiddy childhood memories.
No matter how many new restaurants pop up, some places are worth etching deep into memory for re-living over and over again. Stagger Lee’s is most certainly a place I’ll find myself returning to.