Reading Room Cafe... Not your usual "uni cafe", no!
Honestly, I don't know what I like more. The fact that Reading Room Cafe is a uni cafe, or that for 8 weeks, they're donating a fraction of their proceeds to charity. Having been involved with Engineers Without Borders for a good part of my uni life, I think I'd go with the latter because community development is something that I have always fully supported.
After hearing so much about this new Pop Up Charity event at a uni cafe for few weeks now, I'm so glad I finally went last Saturday! The weather was perfect, we had a nice big group (with 8 of us + 1 toddler), so off to Footscray we went...
We felt almost just as good and comfortable sitting inside as we would if we sat outside. Just because all four walls was almost completely made of glass with lots and lots of light coming in. I like it.
Can't believe everything was prepared from this tiny little kitchen! #impressed
A very "Zumbo" looking barrista, kidding... ;p He made great coffee, though!
HAVE to come back to try their cold drip coffee, looked AMAZING!
AWESOME coffee! The milk was just the right consistency and it still had the fullness and creaminess I enjoy (which can be quite hard for soy milk). The Chompy blend by Sensory Lab I had was delicious. Definitely having the Chompy again next time I'm here.
How pretty is the coffee art? Nice touch that definitely puts people in a better mood... =)
The BFG -- $14.50
Brioche French toast with a generous serve of crispy bacon, candied walnuts and maple syrup
Really good! The candied nuts were great. I was expecting candied bacon too but glad they didn't do that. It was regular bacon but neither salty nor candied, so the BFG was quite a perfectly balanced sweet (from the nuts and syrup) and savoury dish on its own! So much so that it was hard for me to classify it as sweet or savoury... Really interesting, I like it! The thick brioche was soaked all the way through and moist, which made it soft to eat too.
Definitely one of their most famous item in the menu =)
Fritter's Lane -- $14.50
Sweet corn, pumpkin and coriander fritters, poached eggs, avocado, tomato chutney
Only had a small taste of this but the chutney was delish! Full of spices and flavour. I liked the creaminess the pumpkin gave to the fritters. Another specialty of the cafe.
Crackle & Pop -- $16.50
Roasted pork belly, apple and zuchini remoulade, coriander, chilli jam and toasted flatbread
LOVED THIS!!! My favourite dish of the day, actually. First, I really liked how they served it with flatbread instead of baguette because I find the latter tough to eat, more often than not. The pork belly that day was fantastic as well. Meat was so moist and the crackling was thick and crunchy (but not hard), just the way I like it. MMMmmmMMMmmm...
DELICIOUS chilli jam and flatbread!
Another closer look at the pork belleh... Yeahhh~
Also, all the condiments went REALLY well together. The chilli jam was amazing, sweet and punching in flavour. The remoulade was SO good too. Now, imagine... Pork belly, chilli jam, remoulade and flatbread... All in one bite. Killer combo and so delicious. YUMMM...!!
Step 1: Slather some chilli jam on flatbread
Step 2: Top generously with remoulade
Step 3: Grab chunky piece of pork belleh and ENJOY!!
Repeat Steps 1 - 3 to your heart's content
Patas Bravas -- $7.00
Light spiced fried potato with garlic aioli
Man... I cannot begin to describe to you how cute it was when my friend's toddler got so excited as soon as the Patas Bravas hit the table. Murmuring words of excitement, clapping and all... Who doesn't love fried potato? WHO?! Let's just say that "the young one" and "once young"enjoyed this all the same... =]
Overall, I think the owners, Eleena and Michael, did everything right when it came to setting up this Pop Up For Charity Cafe. From getting the right chef, to designing the right menu and even marketing it to the right people (influential bloggers et. al). But, credit where credit is due because they did do a great job in every aspect. Well, I'm saying this based on my experience anyway. It is for that reason that every single table (both indoors and out) were completely occupied by the time we finished our meal. It's always even better too when the owners are such friendly and approachable people, which they are.
To cap it off, the food was generous and it was tasty. Coffee was really good too. And how many times have you come across a place that serves both good food and coffee these days? Plus, I feel like I've only just scratched the surface because there's SO much more food I want to try from their menu and those on display. Had my eyes set on some delectable goodies on my way out. Anyway, I'm definitely coming back to Reading Room Cafe very soon and I do hope that they continue their weekend menu even after the Charity event is over (which I'm sure they will, given the amazing response).
So why not you join me and eat for a good cause? There's about 3 more weeks (I believe?) to give back to the community so do try it soon! Peace! =)