Awhile back I caught up with an old college friend J and of course I had to ask Ash what is a good new place to go! She has heard of nice things about Grain Store which has just opened up on the other end of town so off I went.
Grain store is a beautiful little cafe, very clean and easy with table clothed tables sitting by big windows, fruits and artisan bread sitting out the front and an open kitchen where you can see the chefs working. It is quiet with plenty of natural light and you can just enjoy the food and have a chat with your friends unlike the more popular eateries where it is always bustling and difficult to get tables.
The menu is short (yay- dislike long menus which makes choosing difficult) with prices ranging to about $17-$20 for breakfast items and $25+ for lunch. I was obviously there for breakfast and there are options for those with a sweet tooth and plenty of savouries. I decided to go for scrambled eggs, mushrooms in butter and house smoked salmon (yes you can put together your own brekky!)
It arrived on buttered toast, beautiful light eggs, the most delicious mushrooms I’ve ever tasted and salmon that had a hint of citrus in it. So yummy! It was a decent size breakfast full of flavour and zest.
My partner in crime had the poached eggs, with spinach and tomatoes which looked equally enticing.
I ordered my usual chai latte, which arrived with a whole teapot on a board. It’s utterly adorable and chic. However it is only decent. The usual creamy spicy taste I get from the first hit is actually hiding at the bottom of the teapot so I get it at the end while the first cup is somewhat tepid.
I was invited back a second time for their official opening by Ash, she’s definitely my foodie pimp! This time the tables were cleared from the middle for an event style gathering, and canapes were offered as a show of what their chef can offer.
We met one of the owners who availed herself to tempting us with the savouries. We were treated to several small snips of modern European cuisine; the polenta chips were warm and bursting with salty goodness, the pork belly soft and crunchy, the steak tartare was an amalgation of flavours but best of all on a crusty brioche chip.
Suffice to say as there were many bloggers on hand, there was a flurry of cameras and exclamations of how best to take photos when every platter was brought out.
Of course I couldn’t just leave it there. I had spotted on the menu the offering of pancakes with caramel sauce and popping candy and knew I had to come back for a third time. This time I dragged in Momo. I got my pancakes and she went for the french toast.
I was surprised by the size, there were three small thick pancakes unlike the usual massive portions from other cafes, with chocolate and caramel sauce, half a banana and some nutty brittle. Alas I was disappointed, the pancakes were gluggy and doughy and you’d think chocolate and caramel would make anything delicious but the combination of flavours here weren’t vibrant or sweet. Momo concurred that her french toast was also not as expected and we left a little disheartened. Their menu has changed now however, perhaps their current pancakes would be better!
Overall I think the grain store is a neat little place with some choice offerings on their menu. It’s very picturesque, quiet and easy with attentive staff and on a side of town without many breakfast or lunch options.