120 Hardware Street, Melbourne
- Breakfast ☆☆☆
Carrying out my Cheap Eats Guide for the first time today, I decided to go brunch with J this morning, despite the wind and rain today (stupid Melbourne weather!). I was looking for a 3☆ (the highest rating given by Cheap Eats Guide) breakfast place in the city and came across Hardware Societe, which I've heard lots of good stuff about from people =)
It's located at Hardware Street, NOT Hardware Lane (as I stupidly realised after walking from Lonsdale St to Bourke St along Hardware Lane, trying desperately to find the cafe, before using my trusty but crap LG phone to search for the location again). It's a very small cafe without any big signs outside so it took me a while to find it. Lucky I called in the morning to check what time they do breakfast till (11am for those wondering) or we would have missed out!
It wasn't what I expected - it is a very small cafe for the reputation that it has. We sat down inside since it was still raining and I realised I didn't have any cash so I was hoping that they had card facilities - which they unfortunately didn't!
The waiter told us to order first or we would miss out on breakfast, so I ordered Coddled Eggs with Three Soldiers ($15) - it sounded interesting! J ordered the Omelette with goats cheese and mushrooms. Everything on the menu had a Spanish yet French twist to it =)
So after I ordered I decided to go searching for a CBA ATM while they cook my food - took me AGES to find one (ended up going to Melbourne Central haha). J messaged me and told me my food had arrived - I rushed back to find this
|Coddled Eggs with Three Soldiers|
It wasn't really what I expected 'cause I thought the 2 cups had custard in them, but they were the eggs! mmmm
The Three Soldiers were different but very delicious - Soldier 1 was cherry tomatos with pesto, Soldier 2 was tuna sashimi (?) on yoghurt, and Soldier 3 was marinated canned tuna (i think!). Well worth the money!
J had dug into her omelette by the time I got back so I didn't take a photo of her food - she said it was very good =)
We saw the macarons at the counter so J decided to get 2 - salted caramel and raspberry + rhubarb... mmmmm =) $2.50 each, not as good as Lindt but very close!
Will definitely come here again!
After like 2 years finally came back here again! There had been many instances I wanted to return but either the line was way too long or we came at the time between breakfast and lunch (between 11.30am and 12noon) where the kitchen is closed o_Oa I've never heard of any cafe closing for 30mins like that before =/
There was still a short wait this time so I checked out the cabinet of sweets and breads..
And the freshly baked breads which you can purchase to take home! Plus they have fresh eggs and milk for sale here too! We were thinking of trying out some milk but knowing my mild lactose intolerance probably couldn't handle fresh full cream milk we passed. Though the milk did taste very sweet in P's tea!
I love the yellow decor of this cafe - the hanging lights, the stools, hooks on the wall - yellow happiness =)
P ordered a pot of English Breakfast tea - I think ordering tea out is just dumb 'cause you can make it so easily at home whereas coffees you can't! He won't listen to me but how cute is the teapot jacket! They have many different styles - which I later found you can purchase at T2 =) Not that I'd ever need one but how cute! And yes, the milk was very sweet and creamy.
I got a delicious Chai Latte - all drinks come with a small cinnamon sweet, what a nice gesture =)
Look at the big tray of condiments! 4 flavours of Bonne Maman Jam, a WHOLE WATERMELON?! what for lol?!
Wow a whole block of butter! I wonder if it was homemade butter? I don't think it was but it was very creamy and smooth, maybe cause it was in a fancy case that makes it seem nicer =P
Poached Eggs Un (1) - poached trout, preserved lemon hollandaise, pea & zucchini salad, brioche bun $19
This was one of the best brunches I've had <3 The poached trout was soft and creamy and the eggs were perfectly poached. Love brioche bread - sweet but not too dense, and the hollandaise was creamy and lemony - complemented the salmon perfectly =)
P had the other poached eggs =P Poached Eggs Deux (2) - smoked bacon slab, beetroot remoulade, maple candied apples $19
This was more of a manly dish with the slab of bacon =P Reminds me of the St Ali slab of bacon but looking back that had a lot more fat on it whereas this was more like a cross between bacon and ham and not as salty as well. The candied apples were a nice addition to the dish - added some sweetness to cut through the saltiness =) P enjoyed this dish very much, especially with spreading butter from the block onto his turkish bread =P
9/10 - definitely one of the best brunch places in Melbourne! Worth the wait but just make sure you don't come when the kitchen is closed! =P
4/5 - quick and attentive waiters
3/5 - a little squished by the corner on the large communal table but I guess that's the Melbourne cafe atmosphere anyway!