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Auction Rooms Cafe

Home > Melbourne > Lunch | Food and Wine | Cafes | Brunch | Breakfast
Published July 15th 2013
Auction Rooms
The Auction Rooms' sign
Photography by David Kettle

The Auction Rooms in North Melbourne is rarely outbid when it comes to great brekkies. Having recently won the Eftpos best cafe in the Age Good Cafe Guide 2013 awards it promises you a traditional breakfast with an added dash of special.

A grey Saturday morning on my first trip ever to Melbourne saw my partner and I squeal with delight when we discovered this hotspot happened to be only round the corner from our hotel. My partner, a barista himself - and one with a discerning eye for coffee at that - was keen to see how the experts roll.

Interior Auction Rooms
The interior features high ceilings and timber accents

Auction Rooms
Industrial pendants hang from the ceiling above the kitchen
Photography by David Kettle

We entered the Auction Rooms and were told we would have to wait a (reasonable) 15 minutes for a table for two by a cool looking bloke armed with a clipboard. The wait gave us the perfect amount of time to lap up the perfectly orchestrated interior. High ceilings reminiscent of times gone by when fine items were bartered over loomed above us. Timber coated the walls and floors and drew the eye out to an enclosed outdoor area complete with trees and glass. Industrial pendants swooped down above the open kitchen and swish looking coffee machines glowed and hissed promising much needed coffee.

Auction Rooms
Auction Rooms' baristas

Auction Rooms coffee
Latte art at the Auction Rooms
Photography by David Kettle

"Would you like to try the latest pour over blend?" The clipboarded gent offers. Music to my ears! We slurp it down and smack our lips in delight. We look to our left and see the special pour over coffee counter and the wowing definitely works.

Five minutes more pass and we find ourselves seated amongst the hustle and bustle. Surprisingly, despite being sat at the table closest to the entry, things feel calmer here than in the waiting section. Sunken seating helps create a feeling of cosiness and a spaciousness between tables adds privacy. That said, it's no place to drag out your brekkie. Quickly in, quickly out is the motto, but not at the expense of an enjoyable meal. What's great about this way of dining is that the service is excellent. Your latte art arrives before the milk has sunk and your food is hot out of the pan.

Traditional poached eggs perch effortlessly atop sourdough seed and sprout bread and a healthy splodge of green graces my plate. I love avocado at the best of times, but a ripe, tasty, perfectly mashed avocado works beautifully with the seeping nature of the yolk and toasted slice.

My partner has opted for black pudding which he raves about for days afterwards.

Auction Rooms' black pudding, sourdough seed and sprout and poached eggs
Photography by David Kettle

Probably the cherry on top (or egg) was the service. Very fast and very helpful are all winners in this department, but putting up with the endless photos we took is another. We got in their way and asked for tips on what the Auction Rooms used to be like, all while they were rushing around making coffees and serving food. Nobody turned us away and this friendliness is part and parcel of what makes the place a burning success. It's the perfect cafe to duck in and out of, grab a delicious brew and a spot of tasty brekkie any day of the week.

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When: Monday - Friday 7am until 5pm
Saturday and Sunday 7:30am until 5pm
Where: 103-107 Errol St, North Melbourne VIC 3051
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