Atomica Caffé, Fitzroy

I had taken the week off and organised with a friend to have a lovely midday second breakfast at a café that I have had on my wishlist for sometime now – Atomica Caffé.  I had heard that one of the best cups of coffee is made here, and I was desperate to put that statement to the test.  
The story behind  Atomica Caffé is that it was the first place in the area to roast their coffee beans on the premises, and after 15 years of business, their coffee is well in demand.  They also provide coffee machine consultations so that you are sure to purchase a coffee machine to suit your café’s needs.  

I arrived early to get a feel for the place.  Light poured in from the front to illuminate the delicious muffins and fresh foccacias available on the counter.  The black and white chequered floors and deep wood stools and chairs delivered a sense of old Europe.

When Liz arrived, we settled at a table at the back of house and ordered coffee – mine was to be a strong soy latte.  The wait was not long and by the look of the deep gold, frothy brew, I knew I was in for a good time.  The foam was smooth and silky and the line between froth and milk was blurred.  

The sugar provided was nothing like I have ever seen.  It looked like a blend between brown and raw sugar, processed so they were of the same consistency – a rough powder.  I sprinkled it over the froth and the gold deepened as it got moist, and it easily dissolved once properly stirred through.

The coffee itself was absolutely spectacular!  Strong – just as I asked, but not bitter, too hot or cold.  The coffee was well roasted, brewed and the soy milk was perfect.  It was a perfect soy latte and I ordered a second before we left.

For food, I couldn’t decide between three items – harissa scrambled eggs with feta on toast, a Croque Monsieur with swiss cheese and ham, or a B.L.A.T.  I asked the beanied waitor which he prefered and there was no hesitation with his answer – the B.L.A.T. So be it…

It came out looking a little small… the turkish bread sandwich was cut in half, stacked and secured with a skewer.  It contained bacon, lettuce, avocado, tomato and aioli.

Despite the size, it looked and smelt the part, and once I had made my first bite, I was nearly convinced that I had gone to heaven.  The bacon was perfectly cooked so it wasn’t flaccid or too crispy while the lettuce was still fresh and crisp.  The bread was soft and moist while the tomato cut through the fat of the aioli, avocado and bacon nicely.  Each bite was full of savoury flavours, and while I could have eaten another, a few glasses of water helped me achieve satisfaction.

I love finding new places for breakfast that tick all the boxes – great coffee, great food, friendly staff and fast service. Atomica Caffé has it all, with the potential of developing a relationship with the staff, who really seem to give a shit about the place.  I will be back for that Croque Monsieur… but most importantly, I’ll be back for another coffee.

http://www.atomicacoffee.com.au/

Atomica Caffé on Urbanspoon

 

So, I went back to Atomica Caffé a few days later, after a big night in Fitzroy.  I woke up on the floor of my mate’s apartment with a chronic headache and required coffee and breakfast immediately.  This was a great opportunity also to take Dave there so he can sample their excellent coffee.

We arrived at Atomica Caffé and it was buzzingly busy.  We were seated at the big table at the back and ordered our usual coffees.  They arrived not long after, were consumed, and Dave was pleased.

We also ordered our breakfast – Dave got the egg and bacon roll with chilli jam while I went with the El Gringo eggs.  We waited… and waited… read the paper and waited…and people sat down and ordered and got their food before us and I was starting to get super pissed off… we were forgotten.

The waiter came passed again to collect our empty coffee glasses and asked, “Is there anything else I can get you?”
“Yeah, our breakfast. We ordered ages ago” I replied.

If he freaked out, he hid it well with a polite face and went to consult the kitchen.  He returned with the excuse that the kitchen had been slammed with orders and ours had fallen through the cracks.  Ok, that’s nice, but what are you going to do about it?

He hurried our orders and took the coffees off the bill.  This breakfast better be worth the fucking wait.

When my El Gringo finally arrived, I was sceptical but it wasn’t until my first bite that all contempt melted away.  Two white orbs of perfectly poached eggs, sweet savoury ham and spicy but creamy chipotle hollandaise all atop a block of smoky potato hash that was crisp on the outside but moist and soft on the inside.  It was accompanied with some greens, such as rocket, parsley and chives, which proved to be the ultimate addition that broke through the richness of the eggs and smoke.

The combination of flavours was utterly magical and I was thoroughly impressed with the way everything came together in perfect harmony.  The spiciness of the hollandaise wasn’t overpowering, the eggs were gooey, and the smoky flavour of the hash was a definite treat.  
I definitely recommend this dish, but hopefully yours won’t come with the bitter taste of neglect.

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