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Published July 12th 2015
Finding Neverland in Brisbane
Step into the wonder that is one of Brisbane's most unique cafes - Image from Facebook page
There's an truly enchanting little café and bar on Ann Street. Behind the rustic oak door, as you step over the threshold, you'll feel like you've stepped into fairy tale heaven. Tree trunks rise up from the floor and branches twist their way through the rafters. The magical Faraway tree concept is never far from the mind. You could be a million miles from the grungiest alleys of the Valley just metres away, as you enter a pint sized refuge that you'll want to keep all to yourself.
Good luck with that though, since the secret of Lost Boys is well and truly out. Open since October 2014, the Lost Boys café has been a recent local success story gaining rave reviews and plenty of online buzz. With the adjoining Tree House Bar open since the launch of Bakery Lane in March this year, the owners have upped the ante in truly committing to the fairy tale theme with the tiny, but whimsical Tree House bar that connects to the main cafe.
If the devil is in the detail, the interior designer responsible for the two venues must be Lucifer himself. Not a single expense has been spared, and it's great to such a mesmerising concept so well executed, which many people must have said would be far to ambitious. It's a storybook interior that you need to see to believe.
Speaking of stories, within the pages of vintage children books, the menu written in cursive script is found. It's just one of the many touches that set this café apart to make it one of Brisbane's most unique.
The adjoining tree house bar sells an carefully curated range of organic beers, wines and spirits. Sitting on sawn off logs as stools seals the deal
Also, in keeping with the nature-based theme, The Tree House and Lost Boys are both extremely eco-friendly. Not only is all the entirely vegetarian menu sourced organically to support the environment and farmers, a percentage from all sales at The Lost Boys goes towards carbon conscious projects that help to slow global warming.
Find the menu inside the yellowed pages of vintage children's books
There are many other ways the earth conscious café and bar minimises their impact on Mother Nature. Energy efficient filament bulbs hang down from twisting tree branches, and there's a big focus on recycling, composting and using natural, carbon neutral products. Furthermore their beer, wine and cider selection are all organic. For the wino in me, the distinct lack of sulphites in their cab sav, brings a distinct lack of a savage hangover. What's not to like?
The commitment to the organic concept and the detailed execution is all quite refreshing really, and that's a suitable segue into describing their food which definitely can be described as fresh and refreshing. With hot and continental breakfasts on offer including haloumi fritters, mushrooms eggs benedict, and bircher muesli, there's wholesome freshness to be found across their breakfast and lunch offerings.
Mushroom eggs benedict with sautéed mushrooms, sweet potato rosti and rocket ($17)
We had the eggs and flat mushrooms, served with a bed of rocket and sweet potato rosti, which was a bit over-charred on the outside, but with a delightful warm burst of flavour on the inside.
The smiley, affable barista who took our orders furthermore sealed the deal that we were onto a good thing with our brunch quest. It was a weekday, the venue was not packed, and service was sensational. Don't expect it to be always as gracious, given the stresses on a hopso shift on a packed weekend morning with hungry hordes all making demands simultaneously.
If you're there for a mid day feed, Lost Boys also do vegetarian pizzas, grilled panini's, and rotate fresh salads daily in their cabinet. Of course, behind the wooden doors on Ann Street is also a great place to stop for your takeaway caffeine cravings. Even if you aren't having breakfast, you'll be able to get a sense of the lofty tree-house interior.
As with many new cafés I frequent, after visiting the Lost Boys I was left to wonder why I hadn't tried this wonderland earlier. Never has getting 'lost' for breakfast been such a special journey, and it's one that I'll definitely be repeating. If you're yet to visit, do yourself a favour and 'find' The Lost Boys for yourself.
Lost Boys and Tree House Bar are at 694 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley