12-18 Yarra Place, South Melbourne
(Ph) 9686 2990
Finally got a chance to go to St Ali - I've been wanting to come here ever since going to Dead Man Espresso. Surprisingly it doesn't have any stars in the Cheap Eats Guide (mentioned for good coffee) but has 3 ☆☆☆ in the Good Cafe Guide =)
We got there at 10am on a Sunday. We initially went down the wrong alley and couldn't find it, called the cafe and no one picked up - we were so worried the place was closed on Sunday but I was 100% sure it'd be open! Then we realised we were in the wrong street =P There were a few people waiting outside - a group of 4 decided to "go to the other cafe instead" - think they were heading for Dead Man Espresso =P We got a table pretty much instantly - jumped in front of a couple but I guess our table was for 4 anyway - lucky we were in a group of 3 then! =)
We sat in front of this very cool tea machine and were instantly intrigued.
The waiter asked us if we wanted any drinks and we asked her about the machine - it's for the Syphon - a clean, delicate brew that will enlighten you to the intricacies of speciality coffee of our "Champion" house blend. The menu says "market price" - we were so worried it'd be very expensive but we decided to get one after our meal - it's meant to be taken afterwards to cleanse our palate =)
This cafe reminds me of Auction Rooms with its old warehouse look... their lights are just hung on wires... looks so dangerous!
And their random furniture like the target wardrobe... don't think anyone plays it =P
They use beer bottles for water here lol..
N felt like seafood - so he got the judith bit - house cured sake salmon on toasted bagel with avocado feta and horseradish cream cheese $17.00 - the closest thing to seafood on the menu =P
|the judith bit|
Very generous with the smoked salmon =)
P got coronary - slab of berkshire bacon with poached egg, witlof salad and roasted almonds in smoked paprika with a slice of sourdough $21.00
Wholy moly... I've never seen bacon like this before... really a SLAB of bacon haha! It was more salty than what bacon is like normally... more like cured meat... different but very tasty =) P liked the witlof salad but I'm not a fan of it, kinda bitter =/
I wanted the my mexican cousin - secret recipe corn fritters, baby spinach, haloumi and kasundi with poached or fried eggs $17.00 - of course I got poached eggs =P
|my mexican cousin|
Mmmm I <3 corn fritters after trying the yummy one at Mart 130 =) This didn't have bacon or any meat in it but it was delicious, the fritter was so crunchy and full of flavours! P doesn't normally like to eat my food but he kept taking my fritter =P Kasundi is a hot Indian tomato relish though I couldn't really taste the hotness... was so delicious I finished my meal before the 2 boys finished theirs =)
After our meal we decided to try the interesting coffees... we thought they'd make use of this massive coffee machine but it looks more like decoration than use =P
All 3 of us are coffee n00bs but N decided to get a long black geisha, whatever it was but it was one of the coffees of the day.
Doesn't look that special (no coffee art?) but N liked it even though it was quite strong.
P and I decided to share a syphon and watch the barista perform the art in front of us =) He weighs the water and the coffee beans precisely on a digital scale...
Boils the water to the specified temperature...
Adds the crushed coffee beans to the filtered cup and gives it a stir...
And when you take it off the flame the coffee filters down to the globe...
The barista explains what's so special about this syphon coffee - something about how it's a tea like coffee, how initially you can taste the cherry flavour then the actual coffee hits you... can't remember what else he said but he sounded very knowledgeable =)
Was a bit bitter for our liking... P and I thought it tasted like Chinese herbal tea lol =X But N suggested we add some sugar to it and tada! It tasted very different and was quite nice =)
Not sure if I'd go for it again, more 'cause I'm not a fan of coffee, but the whole show was quite entertaining! =)
coronary - 8/10 - very interesting interpretation of bacon and eggs.. but definitely not good for P's coronary system lol!
my mexican cousin - 8.5/10 - gotta say was one of my favourite brunch dishes of all times!
3/5 - a little bit squished but given it was a Sunday morning what do you expect =P
4/5 - came around a few times asking us what coffees we want etc and food came very quickly =)
Definitely worth coming back for!