Within the Central Business District lies a quiet street that is receiving up quite a bit of attention among local foodies. Why is it so? The reason, might just be PLAIN simple.
Our first impression upon stepping into The Plain Cafe was realizing how cosy and simple this Melbourne-inspired cafe is. The kitchen was designed to be in the middle of the cafe, surrounded by tables and chairs, as though they want to invite you into their world to see how your food is being prepared and admire the chefs-in-tees make the magic happens.
We sat down comfortably and started glancing through the menu. Nothing fanciful about the entire process here. We glanced and glanced, only to realize that many items caught our eyes but we could only choose two (or maybe three?). Somewhat similar to Hatched, most of the main items are egg-based and you can order either in half or full serving. The mains also contain standard ingredients such as tomatoes, cheese or sourdough toasts. Don’t expect to find any fish-n-chips or fries here.
Here’s our first pick, decided based on the menu’s description. At one glance you might wonder if this full serving of Darling’s Eggs would satisfy your hungry stomach. Well, afterall it is only made up of two poached eggs, accompanied with ham with fresh tomatoes resting on two huge slices of sourdough toast. Well, maybe I can only say – looks can be very deceiving. On first bite, I can’t really pinpoint the goodness of this dish actually. I mean, the entire combination tastes very good as a whole. The tomatoes are fresh, the ham and sourdough are well-toasted and the pepper really brought the flavour out of those poached eggs. I also wonder if the name of this dish would attract more female customers than male ones although I must say I am not trying to be stereotypical here.
The Deans Breakfast comes with poached eggs with sourdough bread which is spread with a generous amount of vegemite and cheese before toasting them in an oven. The smooth and silky texture of the vegemite combined with the fragrance of the cheese equates to pure indulgence. A simple dish no doubt, yet very addictive. Vegemite never tasted so good! If you need extras, such as extra eggs or toasts, they can be yours at an additional $1.50 each.
We fancied for more toasts but didn’t want something that would be too filling. And since the toasts here are so good that we could almost ate them on their own, we treated ourselves another serving of toasts with simple salted butter and blueberry jam and that, trust me, is good enough actually. If you think you have the appetite, I would suggest this order as an add-on to your mains for a more toast-y indulgence.
Here’s our only gripe – the juices here are rather expensive for it’s quality and size. No doubt the OJ is rather decent but the apple juice tastes pretty much like apple syrup mixed with iced water. We should have tried the coffee or latte instead. And if you prefer iced water you will have to DIY at the back of the restaurant.
If sourdough toasts, vegemite and poached eggs are your kind of thing, this is really the place to go. Some might not find it worth the money to pay for so much just for some bread and eggs but trust me, these guys at The Plain really serves some quality food which to me might either be an hit or miss for some of the foodies out there. It’s really amazing how this guys can whip up food out of simple toasts and vegemites though. We will be back.
Ratings: 4.0 foodiedoos out of 5.0
The Plain Cafe
50 Craig Road
Tel: 6225 4387
Opens Daily from 7.30am – 7.30pm