Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Luncheonette café
173 Rankins Road,
(opposite Kensington train station)

Open - every day except Mon 8am-3pm.

I like Luncheonette. It is very appealing to the eye, simple but effective. They have made very good use of the tiny space available to them. There is no visible kitchen and yet they produce some lovely breakfast dishes and also have some wonderful produce on view. Very cleverly the menu has been written with a lot of thought as to what their resources are. The organic muffins, cookies and pastries are from Crumbs Organic Bakehouse in Ascot Vale and the Raisin Bread and other Breads/Baguettes are from Dench Bakers in Fitzroy North(just looked them up, must put that on my breakfast list to try, it looks superb).
I love the menu, again simplicity, but with beautiful fresh ingredients. On my first visit here I had the Breakfast Platter and for the price of $15.50 I think it is extremely good value. It has Granola(rolled oats, nuts, dried fruit and honey, baked until crispy), rhubarb, pistachios and yoghurt. Scrumptious, and quite a big serving considering that there is also a serve of the Dench Bakery Raisin Toast and Raspberry Preserve. Delicious, apart from the hard butter which I hate trying to spread. Always so difficult to do especially in a social situation. On my second visit I tried the Baked Eggs with Asparagus and Gruyere. At $12.50 again very good value. The Eggs were nice but nothing to write home about and the Gruyere(was it?)didn’t taste as nutty as I am familiar with. As the Breakfast Platter was served on a wooden board so was this dish, with the eggs in a pan and the toasted baguette on the side. Also on the board some more hard butter and a side dish of very peppery rocket. I think it is interesting to serve the rocket with the eggs but tone down on the pepper. Still not 100% sure that I want to eat rocket for breakfast. What do you think??
The presentation on the wooden boards is delightful but extremely impractical considering the size of the tables. There really is not enough room. I found I was worried about knocking something over (another social faux pas) every time I took a mouthful, so although they look good I’d have to say Get rid of Them! I also found the seating a bit weird. It seems that the bench seats are higher than the chairs so you either feel you are looking up or down at your breakfast or lunch buddy.
Today I tried a Chai late here and it was quite different to any other Chai I have had. It was very peppery and whether the café was just having a bad pepper day(note the rocket earlier on)or this is their version, I don’t know. Chai is supposed to have some pepper in it but this much???? Last time I was here I had a green tea and it was very strong however I also had an English Breakfast tea today which was perfect. Same Barista? Yep! I haven’t made up my mind on this one.
I do feel though that in a lot of café’s, training and consistency is lacking and this could be the answer to success. If every barista working for you made coffee exactly the same way then your customers would know what to expect, however if a customer is unsure of the quality then they will no doubt think twice about ordering.
The Coffee at Luncheonette is Supreme Coffee and it is organic and from fair trade beans. $3.20. They also use organic milk which is served(on the side for tea)in very cute little jugs. Also available is KoKo Hot Chocoate, which I made a quick mental note to try next time, because yes, there will be a next time because like I said at the beginning, I like Luncheonette!

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