Saturday, September 03, 2011

August 28, 2011: Northern Soul

After a deliciously junky but ultimately unfulfilling breakfast, Cindy and I were in need of some more sustenance before we hit Women of Letters at the Thornbuy Theatre. I'd grabbed a takeaway coffee from Northern Soul last time we were in the WoL queue, and I thought they'd be worth trying out for a quick bite this time around.

They've got a nice vibe going on - the cute owl logo on the window was always going to win over a bird-nerd like me - and the interior has a minimalist kind of style going on. They do a pretty good trade in the hours before Women of Letters, but we managed to nab our own table. The breakfast menu runs all day and they've got a blackboard full of lunchy options (the dhal in particular was pretty tempting). Gluten-free and vegan options are well-labelled (although there was nothing on there that covered both bases). Despite it being after 2pm, Cindy and I both stuck to the breakfast menu. She ordered the muesli, which came with poached pears, rhubarb compote and yoghurt (gluten-free, $10).

That's a pretty good fruit-to-muesli ratio isn't it? The muesli was untoasted and was a good mix of fruit, nuts and grains, but the real key to this was the tangy rhubarb. A good, vaguely healthy follow-up to the morning's unhealthiness.

I was feeling like being a little health conscious as well and went with the house-made baked beans on pumpkin toast (vegan, $10).

This was a very hearty plate of food for $10. The beans themselves were a smidgen on the dry side, so it was lucky that the pumpkin bread was tender and moist and not requiring a good sauce-soaking. The flavour combination of the slightly sweet bread and the peppery beans worked well. Perhaps a side of avocado would lift this to something a bit more memorable but at $10, it was a pretty satisfactory lunch.

The service at Northern Soul was friendly and efficient even as the place filled up around us. Coffee (Toby's Estate I think) was good and you really can't go past the prices - there aren't many breakfast places around where more than half of the menu is $10 or cheaper.

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The reviews of Northern Soul around the blogosphere are all pretty positive, check out: Breakfast Aficionado, Ravenous, Hookturns, Do You Want to Stay for Breakfast?, Perfectly Poached (although they don't like the vibe) and Vetti Live in Northcote.

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Northern Soul
843 High Street, Thornbury
9480 2333
veg breakfasts $5-$15

Accessibility: Pretty great - a wide entrance with a small ramp, reasonable space between the tables, a unisex disabled toilet, good light and a relatively low counter for payment.

2 comments:

  1. That is a fab ratio of rhubarb to muesli! Totally gotten hooked on rhubarb compote on muesli because SMXL has a really yummers version and is just downstairs from where I work!

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  2. Vee - like you I am very into rhubarb compote! The best part is, it's easy to make at home too. :-)

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