In the last couple of years, Melbourne’s breakfast scene has become really healthy and, well, super food charged. It’s great to see so many cafes respecting ingredients in their purest form and catering for people with a wide range of specific diets. Whether you’re vegan, paleo or allergic to gluten, chances are you’ll be well looked after by most breakfast hot spots in Melbourne. Cafes have become a lot more creative when it comes to breakfast menus; and not only are they healthy- they taste delicious too. A few years ago, people who were allergic to gluten would usually be offered a fruit salad for breakfast or, if they were lucky, perhaps some eggs on a plate (hold the bread!).
Last week, I ventured to the west side to check out one of Yarraville’s hottest new openings called Giddyup Mule Yarraville- a cafe which prides itself in its healthy, wholesome breakfasts. Housed in a funky former warehouse in the Art of Cycling building on Stephen Street, the cafe is nestled in the quiet side of Yarraville and neighbours a state of the art indoor cycling studio.
The indoor space has been nicely converted in a semi industrial style with exposed brick walls, white subway tiles and polished concrete. It takes advantage of its lofty ceilings, with contemporary lamp light and wire frames studded with pot plants and watering pots. Splashes of aqua, a cosy fireplace and plantar boxes filled with colourful plants are just some of the features which have been added to give the venue its own personality and homely feel.
On sunny days, there’s plenty of sidewalk tables to soak up some morning sunshine or to have breakfast with your pooch. My favourite spot is one of the two shaded tables outside, elevated from the sidewalk to take in all the action of the cafe and the street.
Co-owners Margareth Croce and Jodie Barnett have put their heart and soul into their new venture in Yarraville, forging relationships with local suppliers around town to deliver the highest quality ingredients to their patrons. They go out of their way to welcome guests and make recommendations on the menu according to individual dietary requirements.
The menu favours the health conscious, so those with raw, paleo, gluten-free or vegan diets will feel well and truly at home. But don’t worry there’s still plenty of mouth-watering dishes for the carnivore and treats for the sweet tooth.
The drinks list is impressive, featuring Tea Tonic, Mofo hot chocolate and Chai Walli. Don’t miss the great range of smoothies and juices on offer including the ever popular ‘Mule Smoothie,’ a dreamy concoction of banana, raw cacao and berries, or one of their refreshing blood orange juices. It’s one of the only cafes in the west to serve Axil Coffee Beans (one of my favourite roasters in Hawthorn). Fresh kombucha (fermented black tea) is also on tap (available in both orange and ginger and turmeric flavours) which is freshly made in Melbourne by Grateful Harvest. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but a shot of this in the morning is guaranteed to get your digestive system going and help eliminate toxins.
The heart of the action is at the counter, which houses Margareth and Jodie’s much-loved La Marzocco coffee machine. They have even added their own license plates to it.
With training from Axil Coffee Roasters, they certainly know how to craft a quality brew.
The food menu is fun and inventive, featuring a lot of the usual breakfast classics with a creative twist. There’s a sumptuous trio of mushroom ragout, served with ricotta whip, wilted spinach and poached eggs on spelt and one of the local favourites – the house made confit duck burger.
I started with a superfood packed quinoa super bowl ($12), drenched in cinnamon and a touch of pomegranate glaze to add a touch of sweetness. Teamed with fresh strawberries, blueberries and shaved apple, the real hero was the generous helping of coconut yoghurt which added a touch of creaminess to the dish. This is a great option if you are looking for a lighter start in the morning and is also suitable for vegans and gluten-free diets.
A traditional eggs benny is given a makeover with the addition of pulled pork ($17) which had my taste buds singing with joy. Margareth tells me the pulled pork is slow cooked for over 15 hours which gives it a super tender consistency, falling apart with the slightest of fork nudges. Slithers of crispy apple top a pair of perfectly poached eggs drenched in hollandaise sauce, just enough to cut through the richness of the pork and smokey barbeque sauce.
Sweet tooths will love the banana and blueberry bread stack ($12.5) paired with creamy coconut ice cream and a touch of organic maple syrup. The compote is a perfect balance of tart versus sweetness, giving the dish a burst of colour and flavour; a perfect end to a lovely brunch.
If you’re looking for a breakfast full of wholesome (and some rather delicious) food choices hop on over to Yarraville. You can even try the indoor cycling studio next door while you’re at it.
Overall Rating 8/10 (Food 8/10, Service 9/10, Atmosphere 7/10, Value for Money 8/10).
A 177 Stephen St, Yarraville VIC 3013
T 0405 788 253
I was kindly invited as a guest of Giddyup Mule. All views are my own.