I'm hopeless with band names, which is why I failed to see the hilarity in calling a cafe Fleetwood Macchiato. Surely fleet was just a type of wood, and macchiato is just a type of coffee? Apparently not. So after much third-party chortling, and secret Googling, I finally enlightened myself on the British-American rock band Fleetwood Mac. In my defence, these guys were famous in the '70s, way before my time. But then again, so was ABBA. Moving on.
If there's a skill I do possess (they are few and far between), it's a nose for good cafes. And so it was that on a sunny Sunday morning, I found myself alighting at Erskineville station, on my way to the aforementioned cafe.
The cafe feels nice and homey, with sun-soaked wooden tables and benchtops bathed in buttery golden light.
I love handwritten labels in cafes. The food instantly feels more special, as if it's been handmade, not mass produced. You get slightly misshapen muffins, loaves with an extra edge, and flourless chocolate cakes that have sunk just a little too much in the middle. It's like the difference between an email and a postcard. Nothing compares to that feeling of excitement you get when you open the mailbox and out flies a tattered piece of cardboard shipped all the way from Siberia, with two foreign stamps squashed in the corner, handwriting that gets progressively smaller towards the edge of the postcard, and a long stream of xoxoxoxoxox's scrawled in haste across the bottom of the card as its sender returns hastily to her holiday.
Decapitated beer bottles are given a second life as drinking cups. Again, that rustic, resourceful, homemade feel. Genius.
Baked eggs with Napoli and pangritata, served with a side of sourdough. H had this, so I can't tell you what it tasted like, but I have a feeling that consumption time and tastebud satisfaction are inversely related. So judging by the nanoseconds it took for the meal to be eaten, I'm guessing that its eater rather enjoyed it.
Pangritata is a peasant substitute for Parmesan cheese; a curious medley of stale bread, herbs, and garlic, crushed together and fried until crisp and golden. A great topping for any meal.
Little Rippler - fresh orange, mango and raspberry juice. Beautiful swirls of colour, and a delicious flavour combination! A great way to start the morning :) It actually made me a little nostalgic; it reminded me of painting in primary school, when you'd dip your paintbrush into a jar of water and watch the swirls of paint float around like genies.
Smashed Egg Breakfast Roll with mustard aioli, sriracha, pickles avocado and ham. I love that it was just as smashed as the name suggests. The throwing together of ingredients, hearty and whole, the flavours colliding and headbutting like nothing else. It was a beastly textural mess: soft, runny egg yolk; firm, chewy ham; creamy avocado, sour aioli, all in a crunchy baguette shell. Mmmm.
Roasted mushrooms & zucchini on house made corn tortilla with achiote butter topped with a poached egg. Again, judging by the nanoseconds in which this meal was consumed, and the silence that descended (interrupted only by the sound of contented chewing), I do believe that J enjoyed her meal. It certainly looked good.
A cabinet of sunshine.
There is something irresistably cute about jam jars. So solid and reliable, sitting on their flat behinds. And so snug and safe with their air-tight lids. They know they've got the goods.
So if you're wandering down Erskineville Road, and you're not looking for a ship or a band, but simply a place to put up your feet and enjoy a good cup of coffee and a hearty meal, Fleetwood Macchiato is the place to be.
Until next time.