Sunday, December 20, 2009

December 19, 2009: Auction Rooms

For some reason I've always had a kind of knee-jerk anti-Auction Rooms stance. It may have been that their initial menu looked pretty meat-tastic, or possibly some misguided loyalty to Fandango, but despite countless rave reviews, I've never pushed for a breakfast trip to check it out.

But Mike and Jo convinced us to give it a shot early on Saturday morning, and we strolled in at 8 to our selection of tables. Nestled in a booth near the back, we missed all the action around the coffee machine, but were happy to have a bit of space and enough quiet to converse at normal levels. It's an impressive place - bigger than I thought and fitted out with a laid back but calculated style. Thankfully, the menu seems to have been updated since we first checked it out, and there are a reasonable selection of vego breakfasts to choose from.

Cindy typically scoured the sweet section of the menu, settling on the house-made banana bread with espresso butter ($7.50). Regular readers will know my feelings about banana bread, but Cindy spoke highly of this, with the generous slatherings of slightly coffee-flavoured butter complementing the sweet bread. She caught herself eyeing off Mike's ricotta hotcakes a few times, suggesting that she's already sorted out her order for our next visit.

I was a little disappointed that the Auction Rooms couldn't remove the bacon from the breakfast nasi goreng to give me a vegetarian option, but they made up for it by offering what seems to be a vegan savoury main (I didn't check, but I can't think of any reason that this dish would have dairy or eggs in it): scrambled tofu with sauteed Asian mushrooms, coriander and kim-chi on Dench toast ($16). Everything about this was perfect - from the herbs in the tofu to the spicy kick of the kim-chi, I was in breakfast heaven. The idea of spicy pickled cabbage as part of breakfast is hard to sell, but kim-chi is some kind of breakfast superfood - it really made this meal.

Throw in some excellent coffee and friendly service and it's clear that The Auction Rooms know what they're doing. My only regret is that it's taken us so long to realise it.

Many, many, many other bloggers have already given The Auction Rooms the once over - we're typically twelve months behind the times. Check back this time next year when we finally get visit Proud Mary.

Address: 103-107 Errol Street, North Melbourne
Phone: 93267749
Prices: Vegie breakfasts, $6.50 - $16


  1. You're one up on us - we're still yet to try Auction Rooms ;-)

  2. love those sun soaked pictures - I am yet to visit the auction rooms - the one time I tried they were just closing but have it in my sights - so lovely to hear you were won over - have a happy christmas

  3. Worth a look in, Mellie - and I don't think it's any further away from your abode than it is from ours. :-)

    Thanks, Johanna! Plenty of time and space to make your way there in the future.

  4. Never too late and make sure you get to Proud as soon as ;)