3 mornings in Melbourne.

Flinders Street Railway Station

It’s hard to be in Melbourne and not get sucked into the cafe culture here. After all, Melbourne is synonymous to cafe.  I’m putting up at Collingwood, Inner East of Melbourne till end November so I’ve begun starting my mornings on Urbanspoon before heading out for a coffee run. So here, let me introduce 3 cafes in the area to you.

1. Proud Mary

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Potato Hash with Smoked Salmon, AUD 19

Proud Mary is one of the more popular cafes in the hood and my friend decided to take me there for brunch after picking up from the airport. Apparently, this cafe sees queues snaking out of the door on most days. I guess we were in luck as we managed to grab a table within 5 minutes. I ordered potato hash and changed the add on to salmon instead of bacon. The portion was really filling, which was good, for a famished and jet lagged soul.

Address:

172 Oxford St, Collingwood, VIC

Opening hours:

Mon-Fri: 7am-4pm

Sat-Sun: 8am-4pm

For more information:

http://www.proudmarycoffee.com.au/

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2. South of Johnston  

A hidden gem

Interior of South of Johnston

This rather unassuming, cosy and quaint cafe tucked along Oxford Street is a real deal. Thanks to Urbanspoon, I stumbled upon this gem and begun my weekend well with some takeaway breakfast.

Corn fritters with add on, scrambled eggs, AUD 22

Corn fritters aren’t my usual order for breakfast but I was definitely pleasantly surprised with this. Definitely going back to try out other dishes on the menu. It also has a nice courtyard to chill with some friends over coffee or just with books in the afternoon.

Address:

46 Oxford St, Collingwood, VIC 3066

Opening hours:

Every day: 7.30am-5pm

 

For more information:

http://southofjohnston.com.au/

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3. Lemon, Middle and Orange

Full breakfast, AUD 18.90

Nothing too fancy in terms of food but service was pretty great. They took out my iced coffee from the bill for having missed out poached eggs from my sister’s full breakfast. 🙂

Address:

25 Rokeby St, Collingwood, VIC 3066

Opening hours:

Mon-Fri: 7.30am-3.30pm

Sat: 8am-3pm

Sun: 9am-3pm

For more information:

http://www.lemonmiddleandorange.com/

Chew on this till next time!

All images belong to Solosingaporean unless otherwise credited for. Please give credit where it’s due.

 

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Forty hands.

Forty hands is one of those cafes tucked away in the Tiong Bahru neighbourhood, so best option would be catch a taxi so that you don’t end up walking in circles. This cafe opens early at 8am so it’s perfect for those looking for a early start and avoid the “brunch crowd”, especially on weekends. But, for those who want to sleep in longer, fret not, it’s all day brekkie on weekends.

Iced Mocha (SGD 8)

You have to make do with a narrow walkaway when you want to order at their counter. But, I assure you their coffee makes up for it. I definitely enjoyed my Mocha, which explains why I ordered another glass after my meal.

The Ottoman (via)

Salmon Hash (SGD 16)

Salmon slices soaked in creamy potato sauce accompanied with crisp toast and fries, was definitely my selection, as I did not want to settle for my usual brunch staples (i.e. big breakfast or eggs benedict). Salmon hash was well worth it and addictive after a while.

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No service charge and only GST at Forty Hands. Plus, decent food spread and good coffee. I will definitely be back despite the limited weekend brunch menu options and rather cramped environment (narrow walkways).

Forty hands is just opposite Books Actually, so after a good meal you can just wander in and browse around or explore the rest of this quaint neighbourhood.

Rating: 4/5

Address

78 Yong Siak Street #01-12

Singapore 163078

Tel : +65 6225 8545

For more information: http://www.40handscoffee.com/main.html

All images belong to Solosingaporean unless otherwise credited for. Please give credit where it’s due.

Manly’s 5 cafes.

I miss nearly everything about Manly. I’m so glad I spent spent 2 nights in Manly doing absolutely nothing, before concluding my Sydney adventure last month. My days were spent literally waking up into a coffee house. Then, whiling away the rest of the day away, either by strolling into Coles and people surfer-boy watching or cycling up all the way to foot of North Head. (My next post is gonna be on this!)

1. Barefoot coffee traders (EXCELLENT COFFEE!)

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Their belgian hot chocolate is to die for! I’m not even joking. If I was dying and I could choose my last drink, I’ll choose this hands down. The chocolate is so rich and blended to perfection, that even now as I’m typing this, I can feel this drink down my throat. Okay, I shall stop here. Just go and try coffee from here, whenever you are in Manly, Sydney. If you ever are. You can take my word on this.

Rating: 5/5

Address:

18 Whistler St

NSW 2095

Sydney, Australia

Opening hours:

Mon-Fri: 6.30am-5.30pm

Sat-Sun: 7.30am-5.30pm

For more information:  http://www.au.timeout.com/sydney/restaurants/venues/4661/barefoot-coffee-traders

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2. Three beans

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The one thing you’ll love about Manly is that it’s such a small town you can hardly miss a cafe that is worth checking out. Just basing on the crowd, I stumbled into three beans. And of course, I surely wasn’t disappointed. Definitely decent food and, needless to say, iced chocolate was a bomb.

Rating: 3/5

Address:

2A darley road

NSW 2095

Sydney, Australia

For more information: http://www.threebeans.com.au/

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3. Belgrave Cartel 

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Rita’s baked bacon and egg

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You get a very cozy and indie feel when you step in Belgrave Cartel. It’s quite a different cafe as you don’t have staples like, eggs benedict for instance, which is a refreshing change. Instead, you have interesting twists to your first meal of the day. I loved my egg which was wrapped in baked bacon. Toast came along with avocado and pesto. Definitely a cafe you should try!

Rating: 4/5

Address:

6 Belgrave St

NSW 2095

Sydney, Australia

Opening hours:

Mon-Fri: 6.00am-3.00pm

Sat-Sun: 7.00am-3.00pm

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4. Moo Gourmet Burgers

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MOOteaser – maltesers, chocolate syrup & malt

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Mini Cheese Burger

Not only is Moo Gourmet a cute, little burger joint in Manly but also easily one of the top 5 in town. Just look at how cute straw is?! And also, from the menu I’m sure you can tell, you’ll be spoilt for choice. There have THAT many variations for a burger. I’m not huge on burgers, but I liked Moo Gourmet.

Rating: 3.5/5

Address:

Level 2 & 3

33 South Steyne

NSW 2095

Sydney, Australia

Opening hours:

Mon-Fri: 6.30am-5.30pm

Sat-Sun: 7.30am-5.30pm

For more information: https://www.moogourmetburgers.com.au/

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5. BenBry Burgers

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Decided to try BenBry burgers for my last dinner in Manly. It’s apparently better than Moo Gourmet, according to online reviews. However, I disagree. I didn’t really enjoy BenBry, as my chicken burger was rather oily. It didn’t quite fancy my tastebuds, I must say.

Rating: 2.5/5

Address:

5 Sydney Road

NSW 2095

Sydney, Australia

Opening hours:

Daily: 11.00am till late

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Can you take me back to Manly, please?

All images belong to Solosingaporean unless otherwise credited for. Please give credit where it’s due.

Le Monde, Surry Hills, Sydney.

Located just minutes walk from Central Station, Le Monde serves a good variety of both breakfast and main course food. Also, another plus for brekkie food lovers, all day breakfast is served. Considering I went there for breakfast 2 days in a row, Le Monde definitely lives up to Urbanspoon’s 95% votes.

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Eggs Benedict with poached egg, smoked salmon and hollandaise on a English muffin

Small portion but hollandaise sauce is awesome and salmon is fresh.

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Prawn Fritters with red cabbage, carrot, onion, corn, asparagus/chorizo, roquette, smoked red pepper feta salad & poached egg

Slightly oily as prawn fritters are deep fried but tasty nevertheless.

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Potato Rosti with schulz smokehouse bacon, sautéed spinach, feta, poached egg, pistachio and hollandaise sauce

Served all day which is good for people looking for something heavier to start the day with. Hollandaise sauce could have been poured more generously. Nonetheless, pistachio nuts added a different twist to the rosti.

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Chocolate milkshake and orange juice

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Rating: 4.5/5

Address:

83 Foveaux St

Surry Hills, NSW 2010

How to get there:

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Opening hours:

Mondays to Fridays: 6.30am to 4pm

Saturday: 7.30am to 2pm

For more information:

http://www.lemondecafe.com.au/home.html

Thanks to Urbanspoon, I discovered this hidden gem along Foveaux St.

All images belong to Solosingaporean unless otherwise credited for. Please give credit where it’s due.

Melbourne’s cafe culture.

There is no way you can step into Melbourne and not set foot in any one of the cafes littered all over their streets. Melbourne and cafes are practically synonyms, which explains why cafe culture walking tours are organised for, in the city.

They say when you are in Rome, do as the Romans do. So, during my past 2 visits to Melbourne, last September and this June, I managed to plan by days accordingly and stop by some of the better cafes in town. Here’s my recommended 4 cafes for you when you’re heading to Down Under.

Pitstop #1: Manchester Press, 8 Rankins Lane 

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Bagel with smoked salmon

A very indie looking cafe with a rustic look created by their wooden furniture, Manchester Press boasts some excellent bagels and coffee you shouldn’t miss. Perfect cafe to spend a lazy afternoon in, reading the papers or getting some work done.

For more info, please check Broadsheet out.

Opening Hours:

Mon to Fri 7:00 am – 5:00 pm

Sat 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

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Pitstop #2: Dr. Dax Kitchen, Melbourne Brain Centre, Parkville

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dr dax - 2

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A decent, affordable cafe within University of Melbourne that serves breakfast till 11:30am. From muffins to muesli with yogurt to eggs benedict to omelettes and also french toast you’ll be spoilt for choices.

Opening Hours:

Mon to Fri 7:00 am – 7:00 pm

http://www.drdaxkitchen.com.au/

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Pitstop #3: The Hardware Societe, 118-120 Hardware St 

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Baked eggs with chorizo, sofrito, manchego

Easily one of the better few cafes in Melbourne which explains the wait you might experience to get a table at The Hardware Societe. But, I assure you, the food is well worth the wait. Their breakfast spread is pretty extensive with some French-inspired dishes like Brioche french toast and Croque Madame.

Opening Hours:

Mon to Fri 7:30am to 3pm

Sat& Sun 8:30am to 2pm

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Pitstop #4: Mart 130, 107A Canterbury Rd, Middle Park

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Eggs benedict

Another unique cafe to stop by would be Mart 130 which is located at Middle Park and also next to the tram stop. Why the name you may ask. Mart is tram spelled backwards and 130 is the tram stop number. Hence, the name Mart 130. It’s most popular dish on the menu – corn fritters.

Corn fritters

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A very cosy and homely environment and in perfect location to take a stroll in park after a satisfying meal.

Opening Hours:

Mon to Sun 7:30am to 5pm

All images belong to Solosingaporean unless otherwise credited for. Please give credit where it’s due.