Friends of Mine, Richmond

12/23/2015 , 0 Comments

Friends of Mine is a popular cafe in Richmond on Swan St, about a five minute walk from Burnley station and easily accessible by tram 70. Overall I was happy with my experiences here and the food was pretty decent, though there is quite a bit of waiting around both for a table and for the food to arrive.

The cafe itself is a lot bigger than what I expected, with a cosy layout for the indoor seating. There's also plenty of seats outside, though this would probably be better in summer when the weather is better! For the interior, the seating has been separated into two sections; a more dining room style and a casual style with a communal table and tables for two. The dining room style seating is actually dubbed 'The Posh Dining Room', as it is the seating used when they serve their high tea. We were lucky enough to be seated at a corner table with comfortable couch like seating in this area. There's a lot of modern artwork up on the walls and heaps of cool lights, giving the whole cafe a funky and modern feel to it. There was music playing and chatter from all the tables of people, but as the cafe is quite spacious you didn't have to raise your voices. Each table has nice decorations on it, with a jar of flowers, salt and pepper grinders, and sugar, which came in a little jam jar.

We got to the cafe around 10:45 in the morning and were told we had to wait around 20 minutes for a table. Once we were seated, the staff were prompt to ask if we wanted drinks, though afterwards it was harder to catch their attention to actually order, as it was so busy. Eventually we did manage to place our order, though it did take over 15 minutes for it to arrive. The staff also said they'd bring the bill to us at the end of our meal, then promptly forgot about it afterwards, and another member of staff had to bring it over. The bill was placed in a little felt cover though instead of the usual plate, and they also have really cute name cards.

Both the breakfast and lunch menu items appear to be served all day at Friends of Mine, but we all went with breakfast dishes this time. Both of my friends ordered the 'Hung' over breakfast ($18.90), and I ordered the Baked Eggs ($19.90). We also all ordered organic orange juice ($4.5). The orange juice came in cute small jars, though one had significantly more in it than the other two for some reason. The juice itself was nice and refreshing with pulp, though I did feel it was a little on the sweet side if you had it by itself. With the rest of the meal though, it went really well.

The Hung over consisted of herb and cheesy toast, poached googies (eggs), bacon and smashed avocado. You could also have spiced eggplant kasundi on the side for an extra $1. The cheesy toast was really good, with the crust being nice and crispy and not too hard. There was a surprising amount of bacon rashers, and it was cooked perfectly - not too salty or crispy. In one of the dishes, both eggs were cooked perfectly and were runny when cut into, though with the other dish one was runny and the other was quite over cooked. The smashed avocado went really went with the rest of the dish for texture in particular, and the portion of avocado was really generous. The flavours went really well together so that you didn't need add pepper/salt, nor did it need to be washed down with water or a drink constantly.

The Baked Eggs also consisted of baked beans, hamhocks, spiced chorizo and fetta, and was served with slices of house baked fresh bread. I thought it was an okay dish, though the flavour combination was really good. There was just too much baked beans in the dish in comparison to everything else, in particular the chorizo - there was only about four tiny pieces of chorizo in the whole baked eggs (see second photo below). One of the eggs in my baked eggs was also quite overcooked so wasn't runny when cut into, and because there was so much baked beans in the dish, it didn't really feel like there were two eggs in it. However, there was a really good portion of hamhock, and it did help to bring the dish together with its great tomato-infused flavour and pulled pork like texture. The house made bread was also really great; lovely and soft and smelt delicious, like it had just come out of the oven.

Despite the slightly disappointing baked eggs dish, I'd like to come back to Friends of Mine again to try some of their other dishes, in particular items from the lunch menu or perhaps even the high tea. If you have enough time to spare for a brunch trip, this would be a nice place to visit for sure.

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