By Jodi Bryant
It was the second week of school holidays, the kids had been pretty well-behaved so I decided to take the tribe out for a treat.
It's a pleasant outlook from Fresh Café, with alfresco dining flowing out to the beautified laneway. But for those after more privacy, there is also dining tucked away at the back. The big table inside by the window drew us, with its plush seating and feature cushions.
This café has always been known for its light and breezy feel and its music adds to this ambience.
The savouries cabinet is filled with a range including creamy chicken and mushroom pie, bacon and mushroom egg filo, salmon quiche, salad sandwiches and various paninis and croissants.
As well as specials of the day, Fresh' blackboard menu includes BLATs and CLATs for $17, a B4 (Beef Big Boy Burger) for $18, squid salad, $18, chargrilled scotch club sandwich $21 and a range of snacks including nachos, wedges and fries for up to $11, as well as kids, desserts and all-day breakfast menus.
Between us we shared several mains and sweet treats. The eggs benedict is always a popular option and theirs comes with poached eggs, spinach, kumara rosti, homemade hollandaise sauce and options of either bacon or smoked salmon with avocado on ciabatta for $18.
The avocado went well with this, the salmon adding a natural salty flavour and the crispy kumara rosti added a pleasing and unique twist to the usual hash brown.
My boys halved a bacon and egg, cheese bagel ($8.50) between them. I didn't manage to get their verdict but I'm guessing it was good, because, apart from the usual extraction of the onion, they ate the lot, including the spinach!
We all ordered a sweet treat and shared them between us.
These included the chocolate fudge crunch, $4.50, the sticky date and chocolate pudding, $6, the raw Snickers slice at $5.40, which is gluten and dairy-free, and the rich chocolate mud cake, $5.20.
Being kids, they made a lot of chocolaty choices here but the cabinet also included passion fruit and white choc cheesecake, pecan brioche, apple crumble, almond croissant and banana bread with lemon drizzle, with gluten-free options, such as the carrot cake.
Our choices tasted as they sound – we were not disappointed. My boys were unable to finish theirs but my daughter, with her sweet tooth, hadn't ordered a savoury so ensured there were no crumbs.
The coffee, of a competitive culture these days, was up there and with its presentation too. It was nice to be served by the friendly owner at Fresh Café. The service between the staff was prompt, the central locality pleasant and the food filling and spot on.