Name: Mezina
Location: 176 Smith St, Fitzroy VIC 3066
Prices: Meals $10-15, Drinks $3-5
Cost rating: 4/5
Taste rating: 6/10
Overall rating: 6/10

Trendy open space/ Attention paid to decor/ Not so much on food

Mezina has a large space, with varying levels of casual throughout. You can have a table if you wish to eat a meal, or lounge on the sofa with a coffee and cake. The food is simple no-frills fare.  I wish the food reflected the decor.

Would I order it again? No.

Open faced sandwich/ Vegetarian to boot/ I am in Fitzroy

I expected everything to be segregated and placed in a way that made use of the plate. I wouldn’t mind if this was a sandwich, if it had another slice of bread on top. Or if it were a turkish loaf. I really wish there was something special about it, otherwise to me, it seems too plain. There’s nothing wrong with scrambled eggs, roasted capsicum, avocado and fetta, those are foods that are tasty together. But with the addition of a homemade chutney, or some pesto, or maybe some herbs within the scrambled eggs, or balsamic dressing on the capsicum, it could turn into something I’d be happy to come back and eat again.

Would I order it again? No.

Sammich to break fast/ Easy to eat on the run/ Lots of protein too

I prefer my egg and bacon sandwiches to be buttered toast, fried egg with the yolk still runny in the middle and generous serves of rasher bacon. But if you’re more health conscious (it’s a good thing!), and like homogeneity throughout their sandwiches, this is your egg and bacon sandwich. Short round bacon, trimmed to remove the fat, and the egg is beaten before being fried. The relish adds some sweetness and something interesting to the mix.
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Seven Seeds

Name: Seven Seeds
Location: 114 Berkeley St, Carlton 3053
Price range: Breakfast $4.50-$9.50, Lunch $10.50-$13.50, Drinks $4-7
Cost rating: 3/5
Taste rating: 5/5 (“It’s all good.”)

Filled baguette with chorizo, sauteed onion, pecorino, sherry aioli and cos lettuce/strong> Cost: $10.50

Overall rating: 9/10

I docked a point from the baguette because it wasn’t a baguette on the day, but a sandwich with turkish bread. That is not a problem most of the time, because I like turkish bread. The problem is the how messy it was to eat the sandwich. I could always opt to use a knife and fork, but to me that seems wrong for a sandwich. If you’re an experienced sandwich-eater and have overcome the problem of tacking stacked sandwiches being messy to eat, then this will be a 10/10. Of course, there wouldn’t be this issue if it was a baguette. Aside from the mess issue, this is a delicious sammich. Especially if you like chorizo. The fried chorizo is crispy, and the sauteed onion and pecorino cheese isn’t too salty combined with the aioli and cos lettuce. The lettuce and onions are very important for texture. (This place seems to love sherry-based sauces. The last time I came here, there was another sherry sauce with caramelised onions.)

Look at the pickle/ Chomp it down after sandwich/ Order another

Crushed pea, mint and spring onion FR (Free Range) egg omelette, whipped feta, beetroot jam, hot pressed sourdough sandwich

Cost: $11.50

Overall rating: ? (It looked very very good. I had food envy. Everything here gives me food-envy.)

Peas: Where is the love?/Omelette in my sammich/Colourful relish

Chorizo and adzuki bean soup, served with toasted sourdough
Cost: $10.50
Overall rating: ? (Good enough for a “I need to make this.”)

Adzuki bean soup/ As a savoury main meal/ Mental dissonance

(To me adzuki beans have one purpose, and that is make red bean paste in all its delicious sweet variations. This soup blows my mind.)

Roasted mixed mushrooms, basil pesto, poached FR egg and turkish bread Cost: $13.50

Overall rating: ? (But damn, it looks good. Smells good too. Damn that pesto.)

Vegetarian/ Mushrooms for B vitamins/ Eggs are all protein


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Empire Strikes cafe

I love this place, it’s a guaranteed good day. A good day consists of a delicious hot breakfast, preferably eaten at lunchtime, eating with a group of friends who are also eating delicious food, and being at Empire Strikes Cafe.
The food is either organic or locally sourced. The coffee (femnisto-coffee?) is made from beans sourced from an ethical group, run by Peruvian women. The service is outstanding. It’s warm and welcoming, vibrant, and unbelievably generous.
Empire Strikes cafe (now ‘ES’) is also a gallery for some funky street art. Here are some paintings.

Chillaxed artsy scene/ As expected of Brunswick/ Look at the paintings

Delicious pancakes / Icecream, bacon and syrup / Pancakes level up

Banana pancakes with icecream, bacon and maple syrup. Canadian pancakes. (Bananas are also insanely expensive at the moment. $4 a pop for organic. $2 for the standard banana. Usually I just buy regular food, but a point made at ES is that they use organic or local produce whenever they can.)

Pretty clover leaf / Four leaves to give you good luck / Good start to the day

Clover in your long mac. Also, it has 3 layers. So pretty.

The dangerous stack / Every meal should be breakfast / But that makes no sense

Live dangerously. Do the stack. This is the fabled Dangerous Stack. The plate on the right came out first, (anti-clockwise direction, starting with the toast) sesame toasted (buttered, of course), 2 poached eggs with a thick mayonnaise (It might actually be a butter-based sauce, but it is sour like mayonnaise), sliced chorizo, 2 hash browns, roasted tomatoes, herbed mushrooms, baby spinach and bacon. Then came out the plate with sausages. Huzzah! More food! I thought that was all that was coming (seeing as that is what the entire stack entails), but not so! Along came an errant plate of bacon, finding its rightful place in the world.
“Anyone missing bacon?”
Nobody was missing bacon.
“If nobody claims it, we will,” I say, jokingly.
We got the bacon. What you see in the Dangerous Stack photo, is that plate of extra bacon.

Peel and cut pumpkin / Add salt and roast til done / My work here is done

Roast pumpkin, fetta, baby spinach toastie. Roasted pumpkin was prepared just a little while ago, just before people were arriving.

Holy moly steak / Portion size is mega-huge / Need more stomach space

Steak sanga. They are the size of two burgers. The steak is done medium (not shown in the picture.).

Vegetarian / But bacon makes its way in / So, best of both worlds?

Vegetarian breakfast. Two slices of buttered sesame toast, 2 poached eggs, baby spinach, roasted pumpkin, and I think there are olives, capsicum, eggplant and onions too. There is also bacon on the top-right. (That is from the extra plate of bacon.)

There was also an Eggs Benedict. Unfortunately, no photo of that. (Repeat after me, photograph food before eating it. Or before people eat it.)

Plateful of wedges / Goes down the hatchet with dips/ I have no regrets

Wedges too. Not your ordinary wedges either. Wedges baked with bacon, tasty cheese and spring onions. Served with sour cream, and sweet chili sauce.

Whoo Cowabunga! / Ninja turtles figurines / And a biscuit tin

Every cafe needs some figurines, and a vintage biscuit tin.

Warm and generous / Fantastic food and service / Go visit them now.

The folks at ES. It’s an awesome photo.

We need to go there again.


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