Mekko Market and Cafe in Prospect has proven themselves to become an attractive spot for brunching and lunching, thanks to their versatile space that incorporates elements of a cafe, a restaurant, and even a second-hand market that is almost always fully stocked with preloved goodies at competitive prices.
If you are an avid user of Instagram and follow a number of people based in Adelaide, chances are that at least some of them have posted about the attractive aesthetics and the generously-portioned sizes of Mekko's dishes and drinks, often against the backdrop of their colourful wall that is bound to bring a smile to anyone's and everyone's face.
Renovating the beautiful heritage-listed establishment that used to be a police station/courthouse, Mekko has created a spacious and cozy interior that is decorated with ferns and plants, in addition to a bright and airy outdoor seating area with the comfiest cushioned outdoor furniture (including a couch with throw cushions) - which is perfect for people-watching, having a relaxed dining experience with friends and family, and admiring the hustle and bustle of the busy Prospect Road strip.
I have been a returning customer of Mekko for a bit under a year and if for nothing else, I keep going back (almost too frequently, but trust me - it's worth it!) for their red velvet lattes and their banana bread, which always exceeds my expectations for being the perfect (not to mention delicious) pick-me-up on particularly gloomy mornings! So, when co-owners Marjukka Wilson and Irene Kollanus invited me to check out their new Spring menu, which has been carefully curated by their head chef Tania, I simply couldn't refuse. Specializing in modern Australian cuisine with a Scandinavian twist, their menu is extensive and offers something for everyone.
Mekko Market on Prospect Road (photo by Fatema Sitabkhan)
First up, we tried the Hey Reuben, which is served on Rye sourdough and packed with house-cooked corned beef, Swiss cheese, smoked pastrami, polsky cucumber, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing. A really good Reuben sandwich is typically really hard to come by, especially in Adelaide. There's a level of authenticity to it that has been hard to master by other cafes and restaurants that I've been to. However, Mekko's version of the Reuben hit the spot, in terms of possessing just the right amount of meat and dressing, which made the sandwich delectable to enjoy. It wasn't too dry and the meat was so tender that it could practically melt in your mouth. The Swiss cheese gave it that 'bitey' factor that accentuated the flavours of the overall meal and served with a decently-sized pickle, made for a brilliant and hearty meal on its own.
Next up, we had the eggs Benny, which was served with charcoal sourdough as the base and topped with poached eggs, baby spinach, and beetroot hollandaise. While it is traditionally served with smoked bacon, we opted for the smoked salmon instead. The beetroot hollandaise is one that we have never tried before, but we were pleasantly surprised at its subtle sweet flavour, which wasn't overpowering (as we were suspecting) and instead, gave the eggs, the salmon, and the greens a fresh and vibrant taste. Plus, it looked amazing in presentation, so it wasn't difficult to gobble up this dish to our heart's delight.
Being one with a massive sweet tooth (as you may know), I couldn't pass up the offer of having the red velvet pancakes. Served with cream cheese ice-cream, white chocolate crumble, fresh strawberries and raspberry curd, the pancakes were incredibly soft and fluffy - almost like there were (very) thinly cut slices of a red velvet cake. The fresh fruit and edible flowers on the plate were the perfect touch to make you feel (slightly) less guilty for indulging in this beautiful dessert dish. While the cream cheese ice cream may have added to the 'heaviness' of the dish, it was a great accompaniment to the overall dish. It is certainly a dish best enjoyed shared with some friends (unless you come in absolutely starving and haven't eaten anything since getting out of bed)!
For drinks, I can never go past the red velvet latte and while you may think that it could have possibly been a bit of an overkill with the red velvet pancakes, it was surprisingly not that case. The latte is silky smooth and has a subtle sweetness to it, whilst still ticking the box for being an ideal sweet latte that not only looks pretty with the signature 'M' powdered over the top, but also warms you up on a particularly chilly day out.