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Published September 5th 2015
Its all about the location, and of course the food
Fast becoming the place for new and upmarket office locations, Flinders Street is also developing a reputation for good cafes and excellent food choices. For a number of these cafes this starts from breakfast, where the variety of food is matched by the quality of the environs and the charisma and passion of the baristas and owners.
Flinders Street is named after Captain Matthew Flinders who left the comfort of his home in search of interesting people and new foods. With Captain Flinders in mind, I too elected to leave home and to explore Flinders Street in the City to find great breakfasts, interesting people and to determine the top 7 breakfast locations on Flinders Street.
Xpress-o is an upmarket milk bar which has developed a following amongst locals for friendly service, great menu and good value breakfasts. My choice of a simple bacon and egg roll was large enough to fill me until well into the afternoon, noting that a hash brown had been included on the roll. The Vittoria coffee was delivered as I requested while the Suspended Coffee program gave me a feel-good moment before starting my day. The few outside tables are swamped by the larger number of indoor tables in a pleasant environment that seemed to muffle noises well.
One of the new hip and becoming cafes, the Flinders Street Project has customer service covered in spades. Great smiles from the staff are met by good quality coffee and innovative breakfast foods. The menu has a range of breakfast options but my personal favourite is the maple french toast. Outdoor seating is plenty and being at the quieter end of the street it tends to be a lot more relaxed. Meanwhile those sitting indoors spend many a moment contemplating whether there are really 10,000 wooden spoons hanging from the ceiling. Perhaps a long breakfast over a weekend may give enough time to count them all ?
Located within the Clarion Soho Hotel the Decant menu provides a slightly more upmarket breakfast experience on Flinders Street. Indoor and outdoor seating has a capacity of around 35 with a menu of quality dishes supported by some tasty coffee. The homemade bircher muesli arrives in a large bowl dressed perfectly with apple slices and a small sliced strawberry. The excellent presentation of the dish was matched by the taste of the softened and decadent bircher muesli.
Operating from a small building entrance, Luigi and his delicatessen prove that small is no hindrance to quality nor fun. Tall benches and stools throughout encourage quicker meals rather than longstanding engagements, albeit Luigi's wanderings of the floor to check on the welfare of the clientele encourages conversations about anything and everything. The special blend of coffee is roasted inhouse with the simple but elegant breakfast dishes prepared in the open and small kitchen area.
Opening earlier in 2015 in the Santos Building, the Double Barrel Espresso Bar offers a relaxed setting which is matched by the smooth coffees and gourmet breakfast pastries. The chorizo brioche with egg was quite filling and offered an innovative slant on the normal bacon and egg muffin.
The Mylk Bar at 57 Flinders has only been serving breakfasts for a few months, but that hasn't stopped them from developing a keen following and interest in their menu. An elegant twist on some breakfast staples in this contemporary coffee / wine bar is delivered, and I can vouch for the quality of the mushroom and haloumi bruschetta - it was very filling, yet very more-ish. With mild jazz playing in the background the Mylk Bar offers a great environment for friends to gather.
On the corner of Victoria Square and Flinders Street, Blefari is a great Italian eatery with a large range of breakfast options. The largest of all the Flinders Street cafes, it has extensive seating both in and outdoors, albeit most of the clients tended to be taking their coffees away to the nearby office. The light bright environment is matched by the food, all of which is delivered on large bright crockery. The coffee is solid and matches the need for a quality heartstarter early in the morning.
With at least 3 more new offices and cafes opening on Flinders Street in the next 12 months, the competition to be amongst the best breakfast establishments on Flinders Street is hotting up. Meanwhile I have listed my top seven recommendations - have I missed any?
I have been meaning to check out the Flinders Street Project for ages... I think it's linked to Ginger's on Goodwood Rd somehow, but am not 100 percent...
Looks like a nicely designed place, and that food looks amazing!
Double Barrel design is lovely too - may have to add them to mylist...