Friends of MineOctober 28, 2011
The second dining area, where we sat, has a completely different feel, albeit just as nice. Dark carpet, a light timber feature wall with illuminated prints, and modern wooden chandeliers. It felt quite dressy compared to the other room, with some tables made of marble, and other covered in white linen tablecloths. I quite like the dual effect – it breaks up the place and give each room more focus.
My brunch companion for today was A, and we began with a hot chocolate and a latte. Two guesses as to who got the hot chocolate. It was tall and rich (the hot chocolate, not the drinker).
The other of us ordered a latte. My-oh-my that’s a good coffee! The latte was wonderful, smooth and creamy and heated to the perfect temperature, with a cute little rosetta drawn in.
The menu at Friends of Mine (which shares owners with Porgie + Mr Jones and Snow Pony) is very similar to it’s cousins, but extended, and, dare I say, much better. They have all the favourite classic dishes, mushroom and avocado with feta and “tincy wincy basil” (Ha) on toast etc., but they also have some new and exciting breakfast combinations, which A and I sampled. The lunch menu is equally as enticing.
While waiting for our meals, I indulged in a spot of people-watching, in which I invent stories for people. Here, a young man awaits his friends, thinking deeply on the night before and struggling to remember anything beyond 10pm.
A attractive mirror leans against one wall, adding the illusion of space and nicely framing the two armchairs and the people in them at the table below. Here, two women, possibly sisters, or perhaps just close friends, sit contentedly reading the papers, their silence only broken upon the arrival of their coffees.
I also quite liked the low hanging desk lamps, which had been clamped to a beam running across the ceiling and spotlighted the artwork.
When the waiter first arrived with our meals, he went to give A (the boy) my dish and me (the girl) the salmon. Which was fair enough really, given that I’d ordered the “HUNG” over, a massive dish consisting of two slices of herb + cheesy toast, poached googies, bacon, and eggplant kasundi, which was fantastically spicy. The dish is called hung over, and obviously it’d be perfect for that situation. But I wasn’t, on this occasion, hung over, I was just damn hungry!
The bread was noisette’s multigrain which was awesome (who doesn’t like cheesy toast?). Overall a great dish, well balanced and very filling. The combo of salty bacon and spice from the eggplant was heaven, although I couldn’t finish it all so A got some cheesy toast as a sort of second-breakfast.
Our second round of drinks featured a pot of Earl Grey tea, a magic (sweet as), and general chit chat about other brunch places on our “to go to” list.
Friends of Mine has a wonderful feel to it: decidedly Melbourne, and very warm and inviting, despite the large space. Another positive was that it wasn’t crowded. Busy, yes, but not overrun with people. Here is the delightful looking front counter, you can just see the bottom of the crystal chandelier. The pastries and cakes looked extremely tempting, but I’m trying to be good and managed to resist.
French lollies, magnifique! Love the colours here.
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