Fitzroy North: the lovely Dench Cafe

If I lived north of the CBD, I wouldn’t mind locating myself in Fitzroy North one little bit. Lots of dear little Victorian cottages everywhere, lots of coffee smells and interesting shops and dozens of places to eat. And one of Melbourne’s best bakeries.

Renoun for their beautiful organic sourdough, Dench Bakers have made a trip to Fitzroy North even more appealing by also running an extremely gorgeous cafe with excellent food. So you can drop in for a dozen fresh baked rolls and also settle down in the lovely cafe area for a couple of coffees and a delicious breakfast.

imageThis is what Blackburn J chose: the Brioche bun with crispy pork belly and Vietnamese slaw. It was just amazeballs. Fried pork belly is one of the world’s best things if done well, and this was perfect. The Dench brioche bun is a lovely buttery piece of deliciousness as a stand-alone, but brought together with the tasty pork and the tangy slaw it becomes a poem titled “nomnomnomnomnom … Nom!”

imageMe? I had the mini big breakfast – which consists of a perfectly poached egg on lovely Dench toast, a great pile of Istra bacon, roast tomatoes, thyme mushrooms, spinach and a near perfect potato rosti. And a lemon slice to squeeze on any or all of the above.

The ‘mini’ big breakfast title is deceptive – for me this is pretty substantial. The only way I can interpret mini is that there is one rather than two poached eggs, which suits me. Everything on the plate is done to perfection, and the thyme mushrooms, especially with a bit of lemon squeezed over, are their own special thing. Okay, so this isn’t exactly an exotic innovation with kasundi, Dukkah, tea smoked something or other or some other unexpected item. It doesn’t need to be. It’s lovely. I will decidedly return to try some other examples from the menu HERE.

The cafe itself is a warm and comfortable space, not too crowded in but still cozy. It’s the kind of place where you can get a kick out of sitting in the window space with your coffee feeling all warm and snug watching wet cold people hurrying to shelter from wind and accidentally stepping in puddles. An excellent way to while away some time.

And I get to take away half a dozen fresh baked Dench buns that have a promising future as hamburgers.

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Lets here it from you. Like the food? Agree? Interested? Dispute? Go nuts - promise I'm not fussy ...