Three Bags Full, Abbotsford

9/22/2013 , , 0 Comments

Three Bags Full is a popular cafe in the Richmond/Abbotsford area, about a five minute walk from Victoria St and close to trams 109, 78 and 79. It gets full quite quickly on weekends, so it's probably best to go early so you don't have to wait too long for a table. We went at 10:30 on a Saturday, and had to wait about 15 minutes for a table for three. On weekdays, as long as you don't go during the lunch period, it shouldn't be too long a wait for a table.

As the cafe is always bustling with people, there's a lively atmosphere to the place, and the large windows and open space allow for the interior to be bright and cheerful. The design and decoration of the interior is quite quirky, with artworks on display and dangling lightbulbs. The staff are friendly with good service, though we did have to wait about 20 minutes for our food to arrive. On weekends, both the breakfast and lunch menus are all day, so you can choose from a variety of dishes. There's also specials of the day, as well as an array of desserts on display at the counter. The menu at Three Bags Full is updated every so often to reflect seasonal changes and provide new dishes to try.





The three dishes we decided on were the chicken schnitzel sandwich ($17), green eggs on ham ($15.50) and the Eggs in Hell ($17). We also decided to have the organic bottled juice - I'd actually had this at another cafe and really enjoyed it. The two flavours we chose were the mango, passionfruit and apple, and the guava and apple ($3.50 each). Both juices were light and refreshing with good fruity flavour, and I'd highly recommend it if you're a juice person. A small thing I liked about the juice was that it wasn't just given to us in a bottle, but also a glass with ice on the side, that you could pour the juice into. This isn't done at all cafes, so was nice gesture I thought.



The chicken schnitzel sandwich is from the lunch menu, and came with cheese, aioli and coleslaw on woodfrog bakery sourdough bread. The sandwich is quite big, which made it quite messy to eat - it would've been nice if the sandwich was cut in half. The chicken itself was covered in cheese on both sides, and the bread had nice elasticity. However, the chicken was cooked inconsistently, with some parts dry, whilst some parts tender and moist, and the bottom slice of bread became quite soggy underneath the chicken and coleslaw. The coleslaw itself added a good crunchy texture to the dish, though it could've had more aioli as it felt a bit dry at time. Overall though, there was good flavours to the dish, and it was a decent portion for the price.




The green eggs and ham consisted of scrambled eggs with herbs, crushed peas, grilled leg ham and salted ricotta on sourdough bread. The scrambled eggs were nice and fluffy, and the herbs added good flavour to it. It would've been nice to have more ham to go with the rest of the dish though, and the bread also became quite soggy in the middle under all the ingredients. The ricotta became quite salty when too big a bite was taken, but the peas were cooked well and not too mushy. Initially, it seemed that perhaps two slices of bread would've been better to go with the whole dish, but one piece was surprisingly sufficient enough to leave you feeling full.




The Eggs in Hell consisted of spicy chorizo and tomato ragu with fior de latte, two poached eggs and basil served on fried polenta. The chorizo had good spice to it, and I really liked the tomato ragu, which tasted similar to a salsa. The poached eggs were cooked perfectly, oozing out onto to polenta and chorizo when cut into. The fried polenta was a good subsitute for bread, as it didn't get soggy under all the tomato ragu and poached eggs. Polenta is essentially cornmeal (coarse flour made from dried corn) that has been boiled into a porridge style, and can be cooked by frying, grilling or baking. It was quite crumbly when cut, and gave the dish a grainy texture. It also had a slight crispy texture to it from having being fried, and went well with the rest of the dish to balance out the chorizo, as by itself doesn't have much flavour.




To finish off our meals, we decided on sharing a slice of the cheesecake brownie ($4.50) for dessert. The ratio of cheesecake to brownie gave us just the right amount of sweetness after the savoury meal but wasn't sickly or too rich. The brownie was lovely and moist and the cheesecake creamy, with an added texture from the chocolate marble swirls of what seemed to be small sugar crystals.




I will definitely be visiting Three Bags Full again to try out some of their other menu items, and highly recommend it to anyone wanting to try a good brunch place in Richmond. 


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