Canadian freelance writer living in Melbourne. Saw a Kangaroo once. In the Zoo...
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Published August 8th 2017
The Patron Saint of Beans and Eggs on Rye
In a city that seems to have an equal ratio of brunch spots to people, standing out from the competition can be as difficult as making your presence heard at an AC/DC concert with a dog whistle. Yet nestled between a coin-op laundromat and a public library on Racecourse Road in Flemington, Saint Lucent may very well be a contender for the distinction of best "cuppa" in Melbourne.
From the 8 months I have been living here, I have come to learn that Australians are very easy going by nature. Still, with the possible exception weekend footy, there are few things Melburnians take more seriously than their coffee. So when a barista hands you a beverage from the other end of the counter, the vibe can be a bit intimidating.
However, the first time I stepped through the door of Saint Lucent, I was immediately greeted warmly by the casually dressed staff manning the espresso machines. The lemon-themed wallpaper on the far end of the restaurant, combined with the lo-fi hip hop emanating from the sound system hit that perfect and oh-so-difficult to hit point of hipster-cool without coming across as trying too hard. On the contrary, I immediately felt at home, almost as if I expected to be greeted by name despite never having previously being a customer.
The Perc(ulation)s of Being a Wallflower. Or Citrus
The takeaway Flat White I ordered went down a treat, and there was something incredibly distinct surrounding the flavour of the beans. Wanting to see if their food was as divine as their java, I returned for a proper sit-down brunch not long after.
Saint Lucent is home to an eclectic menu that doesn't really fit into one theme, except maybe decadent. Along with the standard brunch fare of eggs any-style and smashed avocado (the scourge of potential home owners everywhere...) are more adventurous options like a Jamaican spiced chicken burger and a charred polenta cake.
Standouts from my group's morning meal was the Haloumi and Pumpkin Pesto Sandwich along with the special of the day; the Fried Chicken Burger. I'm not exactly sure how the equivalent of a deluxe KFC combo meal fits into the category of brunch, but one bite in and I stopped asking questions.
The Coffee in its Natural Habitat. Its Maker Looks on in the Distance