The best thing about Breakfast Thieves is that it lives up to its name. It is open for bright and early for breakfast every day (except Monday) from 7:30am and for an early riser like me that’s perfect timing. My brain and stomach can’t deal with having breakfast at 10am – don’t get me started on the concept of brunch :–)

The thievery bit comes into the equation via the theme of the cafe – a mysterious hat and coat hanging permanently by the door. Tricksy ‘thief’ references for the menu items. The fitout is otherwise industrial-warehouse-chic with the exposed brickwork, bare light bulbs and timber furniture so beloved of inner city Melbourne cafes.

I’ve had numerous breakfast items there since it opened and I can highly recommend the brioche pain perdu ($15), two thick slices of eggy brioche with maple syrup, poached apples, strawberries, a scoop of light vanilla mascarpone and a generous sprinkling of crushed pistachios and almond flakes.

If savoury is more your style the try Thieves on the Run ($11.50) – basically a egg and bacon sanger but jazzed up with 12 month old Jack’s Reserve Cheddar, wild rocket, homemade tomato relish and those delicious ciabatta rolls from La Madre that I’ve raved about before.

RM, who I’ve never known to eat porridge for breakfast, ordered the quinoa, oats and barley and loved it ($9). This is a huge rib-sticking mixture which will keep you full for hours and warm you against the winter chills. While sweetness comes in the form of drizzled honey and a swirl of vanilla, you can also choose to accompany it with banana and candied walnuts ($3.50) or crushed pistachios and strawberries ($3) for extra flavour and textural interest.

The one failed dish I’ve tried are the sweet corn and basil fritters ‘The Leprechaun’ ($16). The baked beans, smashed avocado and poached eggs were all as expected but those fritters were so bland and wet and mushy inside that I couldn’t finish them. Their gluey masses ruined the whole dish for me.

Finally, if you’re after something sweet to go with your coffee my toddler daughter highly recommends the gigantic Anzac biscuit ($3). It certainly keeps her quiet and occupied so I have a chance to enjoy my meal and I have learnt to order it as soon as I get in the door!

For other great cafes just around the corner, try Ici and Backstreet Cafe.

Breakfast Thieves, 420 Gore St, Fitzroy +61 3 9416 4884

Tue-Sun 7.30am-5.30pm

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