A Melbourne based writer who is a travel junkie, dedicated foodie and emerging photographer.
Published February 3rd 2017
In search of the black latte at White Mojo
We visited White Mojo, located at 182 - 184 Whitehorse Road, Balwyn a few days ago, in search of a slightly unusual drink we'd heard about - a black sesame latte. We were so impressed with our overall experience that we returned today.
White Mojo is located opposite the Palace Balwyn Cinemas
Situated directly across the road from the Palace Balwyn Cinemas, White Mojo is quite a large cafe, offering breakfast, brunch and lunch seven days a week. It's been operating since June 2016, and the decor is bright and modern. The ceiling is decorated with something that looks a bit like the rails from a 'mad mouse' sideshow ride, adding to the neo industrial feel of the place. There are outside tables as well.
Fresh, new interior with industrial chic decor
We were impressed on both occasions by the friendly greeting from the wait staff.
A large bottle of water is placed on the table as we are seated, which turns out to be a lightly sparkling water, on the house.
On our first visit, my partner Dave chose one of the specials of the day, which was "Smoke" Salmon - a dish that was served under a glass cloche, containing the smoke still swirling around the plate. It was a great touch of theatre, and wouldn't have looked out of place at a restaurant charging a lot more than the menu price of $21. Our waitress suggested that next time he should try the "Smoke" Beef Short Ribs (master stock braised beef short rib, cauliflower puree and florets, grilled asparagus and organic bread) ($23), which has a similar presentation - but alas, it was not available today.
It's always interesting to see how a new cafe handles an old standard, and hence, Dave elected to try the Smashed Green (avocado and green pea mash, roasted pine nuts, basil and spinach pesto, crumbled buffalo, poached egg and organic bread ($16.50). He enjoyed the dish, noting the addition of the peas gave it a point of difference in a positive way.
The 'Smashed Green'
On our first visit, I chose the Matcha Pannacotta (crushed pistachio, seasonal fruit, granola and chia seeds) ($16.50). This was a delightful dish, with the seeds creating great texture to combine with the silky pannacotta. It was quite a sweet dish, more like a dessert than a breakfast dish really, but hey, having a little indulgence now and then never hurt anyone.
I'd have been happy to have had a repeat on the pannacotta, but in the interests of trying something new, opted for the Banana and Almond Cake (almond and apple puree, blueberry and marmalade, salted caramel, seasonal fruit and walnut crumble) ($17.50). Featuring two small cakes on the plate, surrounded by a smorgasbord of textures and flavours, this was a stand out dish. Again quite a sweet dish, but the interesting addition of a sprinkle of micro herbs helped to cut through a little of the sweetness.
Banana and almond cake
What I haven't mentioned up until now is the knockout presentation of all the dishes we tried. They say 'you eat with your eyes', and White Mojo seems to have taken this to heart in the way their dishes are presented. I hope my photos do the dishes justice - it was torture to have to take the photos instead of just diving in!
As well as a wide range of breakfast and lunch dishes, White Mojo also stocks a display cabinet of appealing looking cakes and doughnuts, priced at four for $20.
Cakes and doughnuts - $20 for four
White Mojo is open from 7am to 4pm Monday to Friday, and from 8am to 5pm on weekends. I highly recommend a visit.
And finally, what of the drink that was the reason for our original visit - the black sesame latte ($6.50)? Well actually it was pretty good! I'd happily have it as an occasional alternative to my coffee. And it looks amazing.
The black latte - a most curious looking drink, but it actually tastes pretty good
I notice there is also a turmeric latte on the menu ($5.50) - I look forward to testing that one out on a return visit.
The images in this article were taken by the writer. They are not to be reproduced in any form without the express permission of WeekendNotes.