Posted on 01 / 30 / 2014
I'd been wanting to check out this interesting-looking new cafe since I saw it opening up very early in the year. I didn't even realise it was veg*n until I checked out the menu as I walked by recently. When I saw the aesthetic and the menu, it reminded me immediately of Monk Bodhi Dharma in Balaclava and, sure enough, when I did my research I found out it was indeed the 'sister cafe' of MBD. The interior has the rustic look, retro touches (giant clock and blackboard) and exposed brick so many hipster cafes strive for. I was there early on a weekday morning so it wasn't busy yet but there were people there already and of course takeaway coffee buyers stopping in regularly. The coffee is MBD's own of course and hence very good. The menu is also similar but with items given names making reference to the cafe's name (Avoca Ho) and to the north side (Northside Quinoa Pancakes). For my first breakfast here I had a vegan version (remember to ask for this if you're vegan) of the aforementioned avocado dish. I'd had this at MBD, so figured there'd be no surprises. My soy flat white finished, the waiter brought over my breakfast. To my unpleasant surprise the toast was burnt. Not to a cinder but significantly (enough to impart a burnt taste and give the toast a hard brittle texture). I'd have thought there were not too many things to go wrong with the preparation of this dish. Of course this is one incident but, although I didn't send it back because I hate to waste food, I was a bit surprised it was allowed to reach me in that condition. The staff member I mentioned this to (when asked) was responsive and expressed concern and this attitude makes a difference, but still... This place is in my neighbourhood and I'd like to think the bad experience won't be repeated. The coffee is good so I will come here again and even have food here if I'm catching up with friends. Hopefully I have a chance to do a more positive update to this review.
Decent proportion of vegan items and options, Funky cafe atmosphere and responsive staff, Good coffee