On Tuesday, it was frequented by the “glitterati” (which I am always dubious about in Melbourne – are we talking a couple of footballers and a weather girl?) by Saturday morning there were more staff than patrons and about half the patrons were under 5. Welcome to Cafe Vue at Heide!
I was keen to try the new outpost in Shannon Bennett’s conglomerate. Upon arriving I was amused that the design of the restaurant seemingly unwittingly referenced the current exhibition at Heide – cubism.
The space is quite austere, with industrial type lighting and stone flooring. The key design features were towers of terracotta pots filled with parsley.
The spiel on the Heide website noted that the Cafe will offer meals “utilising produce from Sunday Reed’s original vegetable garden”, with this in mind I was a little disappointed to see that the menu was identical to that served at Cafe Vue at 401. Hmmm.
In any event, I was comforted somewhat by an excellent coffee (illy – as with all the Vue restaurants) and set about perusing the menu. I felt like having the porridge, but thought that this was a little boring for the blog-readers(!) and instead ordered the Spanish eggs en cocotte with tomato fondue & capsicum purée:
I was pleased to see that the dish included some non-advertised bacon (always a plus in my book!). The capsicum and tomato was flavoursome, quite sweet and jammy. Unfortunately, the eggs were cooked right through, which is not my preference. It was an enjoyable dish, although it certainly would not give the baked eggs at Min Lokal or Birdman Eating a run for their money.
My dining partner (I’ll call her ‘mum’) ordered the corn fritter with avocado & tomato:
It was beautifully presented (as my dish was) and included several corn fritters. The fritters were pretty tasty although pretty tiny. While it is refreshing not to be served an inordinately large breakfast, I would certainly advise ordering several dishes if you are feeling hungry. It is also worth noting that neither dish came with toast (which is fine for me, the non wheat eater).
We put our excess hunger to better use by ordering some sweet things to round off breakfast. Mum ordered a gorgeous raspberry tart:
A beautiful little specimen, the tart showed off some perfectly ripe raspberries, offset by a rich cream patisserie.
I considered the dessert case before deciding to give the Cafe Vue macarons another go. The Cafe had an artful display of macarons – including coconut, passionfruit, pistachio, lilac, raspberry, chocolate and peach. I selected a lilac and pistachio:
As you can see, there was a fair size difference between the two macarons, and the lilac suffered the same problem as my previous Vue macarons – no discernable filling. The macarons were also quite dull in colour.
The lilac macaron had a good flavour (interesting, not too sweet) but was a bit too dry and crunchy. It contained a chocolate ganache filling that overwhelmed the subtlety of the lilac.
The pistachio macaron was better – flavoursome, softer texture, a discernable “foot”. The buttercream filling tasted strongly of marzipan.
Overall, it was a good breakfast, perhaps not great. There were some teething problems with the service (slow, orders forgotten, overlapping staff) but these will undoubtedly be ironed out once the Cafe has the chance to settle into things. I don’t really think I would go back for breakfast, given the oversupply of fabulous breakfast haunts right near my door. I might be convinced, however, to try the set menu “Heide Garden Menu Du Jour” (two courses for $35, three courses for $45) or pick up one of their picnic hampers and settle in for an alfresco lunch in the gardens.
Cafe Vue at Heide
7 Templestowe Road
Bulleen Victoria 3105 Australia
Ph: (03) 9852 2346.
Open daily for breakfast and lunch (closed Mondays), and Thursday to Saturday for dinner. Reservations are available for the Menu Du Jour only.
Breakfast is good value – most items from $4-$10. Macarons are $2.50