Not wanting to miss out on Melbourne’s sun this weekend, we dropped by Mr. Brightside in Caulfield for brunch on the way to the beach. As we passed the side of the cafe, the open design of the place really stood out right before we even parked the car.
One of the waiters, possibly the manager or in-charge for that day, was very friendly with us when we told him we eat for about ten people, and he said he would make sure he gets us a big table. Whilst they set up some seats at a communal table, I enjoyed the cute wall decor (above) and I especially enjoyed the mouse-hole at the bottom.
Don’t worry, the place was very bright, clean and no mice were to be seen. I wasn’t able to get a good photo of the design, so the above photo is courtesy of Tobias Titz on weheart.co.uk, where you can see some more excellent photos of the cafe’s structure. On the day we visited, the left hand side of the picture was wide open, thus when we drove past, the openness and bright interior made it stand out from the street. The right side was closed, except for the doorway for the staff to walk in and out to the outside tables.
But enough about the design! You are probably waiting for the important thing – the food. Before we were even seated, we were eyeing the drinks such as smoothies passing by in large jars. We had already ordered our drinks but when we saw someone’s iced chocolate in a jar, the girls immediately changed their orders to iced coffees ($5.50) in hope that it would look just as good.
Thankfully it did, a large jar with a generous amount of chocolate flakes on top. However, my banana smoothie ($7) came in a takeaway cup and not a jug so I was quite disappointed after seeing what looked like someone’s berry smoothie earlier. I also regretted not getting an iced chocolate as the chocolate sauce visible in the sides of the jar made it look delicious. Perhaps next time, if there is ever a next time! Not to say there was anything wrong with the smoothie – it tasted just as a smoothie should but $7 felt a bit expensive.
One of us went for one of the specials, which seem to change quite often and sound just as appealing as anything on the regular menu. It was an eggs and bacon potato tart with rocket ($15, above) and usually comes with salad, but my friend asked for anything as an alternative as she wouldn’t eat the salad. The staff were very flexible and provided her with a side of chips instead. To me, it pretty much tasted like quiche without the pastry but the chips were nice and thick.
Due to my love for potato hash browns, I ordered something called exactly that ($15, above) and it was served with beef brisket, grain mustard sauce and poached eggs. I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of of beef brisket that they gave me, and I usually don’t like mustard but the grain mustard was light and tangy, so it provided just enough kick to make the meat flavoursome.
My other friend ordered the cranberry granola ($9.50) with fruit, yogurt and a side of milk. It was cutely presented on its own chopping board. Only downside was the staff spilling the milk the first time and it just missed my friend. They were nice enough to get a new jug for her.
Earlier, we also had someone else’s drinks given to us and we hadn’t even ordered ours yet. It’s not an entirely big cafe, but I guess it was a busy Saturday lunch. A waiter also double-checked we had ordered iced coffees and not chocolates, yet it looked like they still made iced chocolates instead (which we would have willingly accepted haha) but he turned around when he saw our confused faces.
In order to prove ourselves to the waiter who seated us, we asked for the menu again as we were considering ordering an extra dish, which seems to have become a tradition. We were about to order their version of the Reuben ($14), or may have chosen to go for another special, a smoked trout omelette if it hadn’t been crossed off the board, when we thought we would enact some self-control and give it a miss this time.
Their cake display (above) had a wide variety and looked enticing, but we thought we might save our stomachs for some post-beach snacks.
The design of the place is what really impressed me, and the presentation of their drinks. The main waiter was friendly and enjoyed our jokes, so we enjoyed the service and the food was good but not mind-blowing. Located in Caulfield, it was busy and lively with lots of mums and bubs and an older, well-off crowd.
Mr. Brightside is located 189A Booran Rd, Caulfield and is open Mon-Fri 7am-4pm, and 7.30am-4pm on the weekend.
Images taken by my friends and I, unless indicated otherwise.