I wanted breakfast. We had just spent the night at my mum’s house and I was curious to see if we could find a decent café that served good coffee and breakfast until at least 4pm. I did a quick search on the Urbanspoon App and found out that the Banksia Nursery had a café inside that did breakfast and lunch. The reviews were good so we went to check it out.
You had to actually walk through the nursery to get to the café bit. The colours were amazing and it was a clever way to get people to see the excellent selection of flora available. I wouldn’t mind coming back just to check out the plants. Anyway…
We got to the eating area and a lady came around from behind the counter to greet us. I asked about breakfast and to our dismay, it had ended an hour ago at 11:30am. SHOCK HORROR! Were we that far out in the sticks that everything starts at the crack of dawn and the afternoon was solely for lunchtime cuisine? I didn’t believe it, so we got back into the car and drove towards Mulgrave.
Another quick search brought up Froth and Grind café on Wellington Road in Rowville. While the intention was to go there, we ended up settling on the Eating House, because it didn’t look as pretentious and there were more people inside. It was actually very bright and spacious inside, with an additional undercover area for smokers. We chose a two seater in the middle and a young waitress whipped over to take our order for coffee.
The menu was full of all sorts of goodies, and not just for breakfast. They had an excellent selection of entrées, like arancini balls, koftas and mini wagyu burgers. For mains, they had a few pasta options, three different cuts of steak, and a whole page dedicated to pizza; the most interesting flavour being the Chinese Roast Duck pizza. Kooky!
I couldn’t decide on what to have for breakfast so I asked the waitress which she would choose – the Buttermilk Pancakes or the Breakfast sub. She didn’t hesitate to suggest the pancakes because they ‘looked good’. Alright, I’ll have that.
It certainly did look fabulous. A short stack of three buttermilk pancakes topped with rindless bacon and sugared peach slices surrounded by a moat of maple syrup. The syrup had a very delicate flavour, wasn’t too sweet and was great for soaking the pancakes. The ridiculous sweetness came from the caramelised peaches, which were hot and sweet enough to make your teeth rot. I’m not a sweet tooth normally so it was a bit much for me. The bacon was perfectly cooked but the pancakes could have been cooked a bit more; they were a little doughy.
I’m not 100% sure about the union of bacon and sweets yet. A few years back, Dave and I cooked a batch of bacon brownies and I felt the same then as I do now – a little NQR. If the bacon was replaced with a smooth cream cheese or ricotta, then this would have been beautiful. I ended up taking the bacon off and eating it separately.
“The eggs weren’t as runny as I was expecting. The mushrooms were cooked well, juicy and had lots of flavour. The tomato was roasted but luke warm. I would have preferred it to be warmer. The bacon was cooked well.”
I’d be happy to come back for dinner. Perhaps the next time there’s an occasion to celebrate over dinner, I’ll suggest this place. The food isn’t too pricey, the staff are attentive and friendly but leave you alone to eat, the space is fresh and clean, and the food is colourful. There’s potential for other great dishes, and maybe one day, I’ll try their Bloody Mary.