St Kilda Dispensary is a sweet cafe on Brighton Road – near the corner of St Kilda Road and Carlisle Street. The name is a reference to the original usage of the building, which was – surprise surprise – a dispensary. The cafe runs over two rooms, and while small it’s really cute inside, with a colour scheme of white and green, and decorated with lots of vintage pharmaceutical and medical items.
I’ve written about Streat before, and I’m posting about it again because I think it’s a bit underrated.
The food at Streat is good, drawing inspiration from different cuisines and places around the world, so it’s not just about bacon, eggs and toast. They don’t need a slick fit out and the latest shiny coffee machines. I like Streat so much that it’s our second most visited cafe (after Reading Rooms).
Proud Mary has been around for a while, and from the beginning it’s been hot.
And on a particularly hot Friday temperature wise, I was there for breakfast with my friend Em (Random Friday Off Work – huzzah). It was our second attempt for Random Friday Off Work breakfast there – our first attempt was derailed by Em’s toddler being sick and having to tag along. Proud Mary was a bit too busy for a little kidlet with lots of energy, so we headed somewhere a bit quieter.
Not just because it means a three day weekend (and when is that going to be implemented world wide? I will join that movement) but because sometimes it means that I get to have breakfast with my friend Em.
It was one of the hottest days in 2013, I had a Friday off work, and my DD was back from a month long holiday.
It called for a Friday Road Trip.
We roped in Thanh and Shellie, piled into Shellie’s car and headed down the Peninsula. On the drive down there was Spice Girls car singalong (yep, we have no shame), alpaca spotting (llama llama llama!) and a stop at the Vintage Shed for food blogging photo props.
We eat at Reading Room Cafe so much it’s a wonder we go anywhere else for brunch.
Melbourne has a ton of cooler than cool cafes, and when I asked the Boys for help with an analogy, they said:
“If Melbourne’s hip cafes are the popular kids, Reading Room Cafe is like that nerdy kid that everyone beats up for his/her lunch money. But then s/he grows up and becomes successful and cool, while the ex-popular kids are working at Hungry Jacks.”
I’m not sure they know what an analogy actually is.
However, Reading Room Cafe is solid (and they are definitely *not* the kid that gets beat up). It’s one of my favourites because it ticks all my boxes:
- The food is good and it’s interesting.
- The menu changes seasonally, with weekly specials.
- The coffee is good.
- It’s close to home.
- We can always get a table without having to wait.
We’re spoilt for choice for cafes in Melbourne. Totally spoilt. So much so that making a choice can be slightly overwhelming at times.
(And yes, I know – total first world problem.)
So when faced with making an option, I often defer back to our tried and true places to avoid having to think about it.
The other weekend when Alastair and I went out for brunch, I decided it was time for something other than our usual haunts. I remembered that we hadn’t visited Footscray Milking Station yet, so off we went.
Formerly a milk bar, Footscray Milking Station is located on the corner of a quiet residential street away from any other cafes. The interior contains hints of its former use, along with exposed brick walls, heavy wooden tables, milk bottles reused as water vessels, a cabinet of baked goods, and the occasional spot of bright green. It’s not particularly large inside, though there are tables on the front footpath plus a courtyard at the back. On our visit we managed to snag one of the last inside tables.
Rumour has it that the best corn fritters in Melbourne are from Shellie’s kitchen. This is currently unconfirmed because, despite my non-subtle hints (ie: “When are you making me corn fritters, Shellie?”) I haven’t been able to wrangle an invitation to trial them.
I had heard that Replete Providore in Hawthorn also do rather good corn fritters – apparently ones to rival my current faves at Mart 130. Alastair and I had a day off recently, and took the opportunity to try them out.
Note: this is a scheduled post while I’m away. Replies to comments/emails will be even slower than usual.
Streat is great. Here’s four reasons why:
1: Chipotle spiced beans with pork belly. For breakfast.
2: It’s a social enterprise and assists homeless youth with hospitality training.
3: They have a breakfast called Dogs breakfast that has hushpuppies. CUTE.
4: See reason 1 again (it deserves to be noted twice).