Sunday, October 16, 2011

Lux Foundry

Lux Foundry sits beside the light railway line at 21 Hope Street, Brunswick. A formerly cavernous industrial space (the premises, built in 1891, of the Brunswick Gas and Coke Company, and later home to the manufacturer of Lux stoves, two handsome examples of which are still on site), it's been intelligently transformed into a café that mixes original features and vintage hardware with quirky modern touches and has a generous outside space. After greedily imbibing my vanilla milkshake (served in a steel cup reminiscent of a 1950s diner) I hardly had room for my scrambled egg with cavalo nero and grated asagio on sourdough; my companion's pork schnitzel with apple and celeriac coleslaw tasted as good as it looked. At lunchtime we sat outside in quixotic Melbourne weather rapidly changing from almost too sunny to Arctic breezes; many others had had the same idea and Lux clearly welcomes people of all ages plus dogs and babies.

Lux Foundry on Urbanspoon

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Almost French

Almost French (is that a good or a bad thing)? is at 138 Swan Street, Richmond. Owned by a Vietnamese baker, it's a treasure trove of excellent cakes; sitting at a table outside, on a semi-sunny day, we ordered creamy, delicately vanilla-flavoured mille feuilles, "delicious" lemon creme brulée and coffee, all of which vanished pretty quickly. I always ask before taking photographs and our friendly, efficient waitress said yes straight away; when I went inside, however, I got the most hostile reaction I've had since I started this blog: a girl behind the counter snapped at me "Why are you taking photographs?", before asking someone who was clearly her boss (and who graciously waved her assent) if she minded. One deeply unpleasant staff member aside, this is a lovely café and provided the coast is clear, I'll be back to try the cheesecake, which comes recommended.

Almost French on Urbanspoon

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Public House

Apparently the steaks are good at Public House (435 Church Street, Richmond), because the owners have an abattoir (which has a definite flavour of urban myth about it), but we didn't try the steaks; instead we had three sharing plates with goujons of monkfish, calamari salad, and spatchcock quail, accompanied by French fries with creamy aioli. The food was enjoyable: adequate, but not spectacular; the really interesting thing was the decor, which had a neo-brutalist feel with much concrete, leavened by flashes of humour (the retro pub carpet, little pieces of art deco lighting, colours and shapes). There's a pleasant terrace upstairs where we sat for lunch, and the bar staff were friendly and attentive, but at lunchtime on a sunny Saturday, in a busy street, it was completely empty.

Public House on Urbanspoon