With so many great cafes on Gertrude Street, both old and new, it can be difficult to choose where to go. My advice? Just start from one end and work your way down :–) That way, at some stage you’ll make your way to the pine-tree stencilled windows of the excellent Arcadia.
Arcadia ticks all the right cafe boxes for me. A relaxed and airy interior. Friendly, it’s-your-neighbourhood-joint-where-everyone-knows-your-name kind of service (the girl behind the counter called me ‘love’ the whole time, which I found to my surprised that I enjoyed). Huuuge servings of good food.
My most recent breakfast at Arcadia consisted of Mexican eggs on rye with tomato, avocado and coriander salsa ($14.50). When I explained I couldn’t eat poached eggs, the waitress quickly suggested scrambled or fried eggs instead and I’m glad I went with scrambled, as the mound of brightly-hued eggy wobble was just gorgeous; the chef did not cross the fine line between perfectly scrambled and rubbery eggs. My plate also came heaped with a man-sized serve of chunky chopped fresh tomatos and avocados, lifted beyond the norm with a piquant coriander and chilli-spiked salsa. For the gluten-intolerant, I noticed that you are able to exchange your bread to Fatto a Mano‘s gluten-free bread on request.
I accompanied my dish with a very good small mango smoothie ($6), chilled and made with fresh fruit.
As there was no room for a breakfast dessert, I opted to take home a freshly-baked sweet muffin ($4.50). The flavours of the sweet and savoury muffins change daily, a bit of a shame really as blueberry, white chocolate and shredded coconut was a delectable combination.
While Arcadia may not draw the crowds of De Clieu or Birdman Eating, it has obviously survived the competition in Gertrude Street due to a combination of chirpy service and delicious food made with fresh ingredients. So if the nearby breakfast queues are getting too long for your weekend brunch, why not drop into Arcadia instead?
- Arcadia, 193 Gertrude St, Fitzroy +61 3 9416 1055