I am a mum of two and Primary School teacher whose aim is to never be home during the midday movie. I believe that I am only ever a car trip away from an adventure.
Published July 3rd 2013
Where Melbourne's coffee and art culture seamlessly merge
A cafe titled "Untitled?" Well if that doesn't get you attention as you drive or tram ride up Glenhuntly Road then maybe you should head inside to see if the food, art work, digital projection screen or art gallery does!
The Untitled Cafe seamlessly mixes Melbourne's cafe/coffee culture with our love of art and merges the two creating a cool and creative vibe. This place originally was developed to provide snacks and coffees for the students from Melbourne Studio of Arts and their sister school, Art Encounters. It became so popular that they extended their menu and took up the premises they have know, a charming old building full of character and inspiration.
The cafe shares its space with the Untitled Art Supply store next door. It's always worth a visit, whether you are an artist or a customer from the cafe mesmerised by the paint brush sculpture in the window. They stock a good range of items for the beginner right through to the more experienced artist and for kids, they have a large variety of Steiner products.
Paint Brush ArtWork Hangs in the Window
When you walk into the cafe you notice a large communal table which is usually covered in complementary paint pots, paper and pencils, ready for any budding artist to let their imagination flow. This is a huge draw card when you have kids, they are happy to colour away which means a hot coffee without interruption for you. And it truly happens, first hot coffee I had in years, I had here.
Paints, Paper and Pencils to get Arists Creating
The atmosphere is warm and welcoming ,art works decorate the walls and depending what time you show up, you may see the large digital projector playing old movies. Last time we were there is was an old black and white Mickey Mouse tale which thrilled the juniors...although they were concerned by Mickeys "odd" appearance!
Setting myself up between the paint palettes and the silent screen I was ready for an undisturbed coffee and some lunch. I chose a soy Prana Chai which was flavorsome and made with care, no one rushes to create here, even a latte is made with a delicate and graceful touch.
Happy Hands at Work
The hot chocolates are another specialty to Untitled. The warm milk comes with only a splash of syrup but with a wooden spoon holding a chocolate block at its end which gets stirred into the milk for perfection. Having said that, my kids tend to eat the chocolate half melted and then drink the milk. Once again a reminder that rules are not steadfast in an arty environment.
Delicious Melty Chocolate Swirling in Creamy Warm Milk
My daughter decided on the sausage roll, home made and tasty and certainly big enough for her. I tossed up between the Quinoa Pot and the Soup of the Day finally settling on a bowl of hearty, red lentil and vegetable soup with multigrain toast. I always get the soup, who was I kidding!
Fresh and Fulfilling Red Lentil and Vegetable Soup
There is a varied menu for breakfast, think vanilla scented porridge and orange and sultana fruit loaf. Lunch can be out of the well stocked counter full of focaccias, pies, ricotta balls or perhaps you prefer something made fresh like corn and dill piklets or homemade baked beans. Loads of yummy looking treats to go with your Five Senses coffee, chai or tea.
Loads of Beautiful Wall Art to be Inspired By.
Prices vary from $3.50 for a standard coffee to $16.50 for a salmon and avocado salad, quite standard. You can also pick up a colouring pack if the shelves of pencils and paints don't encourage your inner artist to come out and play.
Just note that the kitchen is closed on Mondays, so only food from the counter is available.
A beautiful courtyard with painted murals and a communal table growing a garden within, is a glorious option if weather permits. Otherwise you could consider an art class which run for all ages during and around school holidays with the gallery right on site. You can contact art encounters to find out more, but with selections such as Surrealism Printmaking, Drawing Skulls and Bones and Egyptian Animal Icon Sculptures you can be guarantee these are no ordinary art classes.
Painted Murals and a Living Table Makes for a Relaxing Oasis on a Warm Melbourne Day
Untitled Cafe loves their coffee, their food, their art and other peoples kids so next time you need a fix of either, or just a hot quality coffee made with love and skill then head down Glenhuntly Road and look out for the bright paint splatted building and you will know you have arrived.