It's taken me far, far longer than Michael to make it to Proud Mary. It's clearly a bloggers' favourite - Michael linked to fourteen posts about it on his May visit, and I've discovered a further twenty that have been published since then! (Scroll down to the bottom of this post to check 'em out.)
Coffee dunce that I am, Proud Mary's third-wave coffee menu didn't make much of an impression on me. I did enjoy browsing their page-long list of teas, however, and was very happy with the pot of Japanese morning dew ($4) that I eventually selected, a subtly sweet and floral herbal brew.
The all-day breakfast menu is surprisingly dominated by sweet options. Michael held firm to his savoury roots, ordering the avocado with charred corn salsa and chilli oil on sourdough ($13). He deemed it excellent.
Meanwhile I ummed and aahed over fruit toast, scones and pancakes, eventually settling on the vanilla rice (no, not that one) with pineapple, piquin, coconut and lime ($12.50). The rice texture was perfect - creamy, not gluggy or mushy - and I loved the fresh pineapple, but the flavours didn't quite meld as I would have liked. Might fresh chilli have worked better than the powdered piquin, or would rice cooked in coconut milk improve on the shredded coconut garnish? Perhaps pandan would fit where the vanilla didn't quite. I can't be sure. I liked this combination but I wanted to love it.
Across the table, Jo was having paroxysms of ecstasy over the buttermilk pancakes with dulce con leche and cherry compote ($15.50). It's a sign that I might yet learn to love Proud Mary.
Since Michael's Proud Mary post, it's also be written about on Melbourne Cafes Photo Blog, I'm so hungreeeeeeeeee, melbourne gastronome, The Frockette, Half-Eaten, omnomnomnom, hookturns.com, Brunchalot Brunch Blog, Food Fable, The Pantsless Chef, the Belly Rules the Mind, Three Girls, Around the World, Melbourne Dining Experiences, Denizen Brain, Petit-Miamx, Caleb Bridge's Blog, Coffee Hunter, Food Rehab, My Food Odyssey and My Aching Head.