When Stuff White People Like author Christan Lander visited Melbourne in 2009, he went in search of the whitest suburb in the city.
He landed in North Fitzroy. To be precise, he landed at The Green Grocer ‘a trendy cafe-slash-grocer. It’s the sort of place that sells organic vegetables, bio-dynamic meat and expensive pots of jam. On weekends, it’s overrun by couples with babies on their chests and The Age under their arms.’
Well, I may not be white but I think I fit right in at The Green Grocer. I cycled there. Baby sits in capsule while I read The Age’s restaurant reviews. On my way out, I admire the display of sparkling fresh fruit and veg along one wall and check out the pamphlet on the cooking classes held upstairs. I even buy a jar of the housemade organic tomato relish to encourage RM to upgrade his palate from Heinz tomato sauce ($12.50).
Anyway, back to my lunch. The menu is a showcase for organic produce and contains classic items with a twist. To start I try the citrus and elderberry refresher ($6), a tall glass muddled with orange juice, grapefruit juice and elderberry juice over ice. It was almost medicinal in appearance and flavour, but not in an unpleasant way.
Torn between sweet and savoury, healthy and indulgent, I go for the herb and fetta pancake with crispy bacon, avocado, sweetcorn and coriander salsa ($15). When they say ‘pancake’ they really do mean pancake in the singular.
I was worried that it wouldn’t be filling enough but the pancake’s oozy fetta batter turned out a sort of fancy version of Pizza Hut’s cheesy crust pizza base! The bacon had been fried to a perfect crisp that snapped off with the knife’s pressure, the avocado was super-fresh and the salsa rounded off the whole plate with some contrasting piquancy.
Desserts were all contained in the glass cabinet and I went for the passionfruit baked cheesecake ($8). It was a very generous slice of cake but I found the texture to be too hefty and solid for my liking. It wasn’t a bad cheesecake but to be honest I wish I hadn’t used up the credit of calories that I’d cycled off in return for this slice of cake.
I found the service to be smiling and pleasant and the clientele were, well, all white well-heeled people. But that’s ok! White, black, yellow and pink – if you enjoy eating good quality ingredients prepared with care and served in pleasant surroundings, The Green Grocer‘s for you.
- The Green Grocer, 217 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North +61 3 9489 1747