103 Albion Street, Brunswick (map)
Just before Christmas, Schatzi and I were complaining to each other that we hadn't had a long chat one-on-one in weeks. We decided on a secret brunch, in a place neither of us had been to before. As she lives in North Carlton, I decided to choose somewhere Northside, and looked back through my Google Reader account for posts I had tagged. One venue that Michael and Cindy, Johanna, Fi and Jamie had all written favourable reviews of was A Minor Place, up in Brunswick. I suggested it to Schatzi - when she saw the pretty pictures from Breakfast Out she was sold!
A former milk bar in Albion Street, A Minor Place has blossomed into a hip cafe (Breakfast Out's photos and Johanna's words had warned us in advance that we may come across hipsters tapping away on MacBooks... and sure enough, a girl with chunky framed glasses, a severe bob haircut and a vintage blouse was tapping away on a MacBook directly across from us... I didn't take a photo of her but I'm sure you can picture her!).
So why the "meh", you may ask? Well, apart from one notable exception, everything we had was surprisingly disappointing.
Schatzi ordered the Brazilian Eggs ($15): poached eggs on toast with avocado, roast tomato, Henry's beans and spinach. I ordered the A Minor Place breakfast ($15), which was the same thing except that the avocado was replaced with grilled ham. We're not fussy eaters, but the both dishes just felt kinda... average. Watery eggs and tomatoes, bland bread. The one notable exception was Henry's beans, which were delicious. They can be ordered separately for $10 - with garlic and rosemary, served with rocket dukkah and toast.
No doubt we would've been happier had we just ordered Henry's beans, or if we'd gone for the French toast ($10, with poached pears, honey lemon labne, roasted walnuts and pure maple - nobody appears to have a photo of it on their blog but Miss Hipster ordered some and it looked fantastic).
I wanted to like A Minor Place, and was prepared to write it down to poor menu choices on our part, but then we ordered a slice of the banana and chocolate bread to share and it arrived smeared with a horribly salty margarine, which was really unpleasant combined with the icing sugar and sweet bread (I prefer my choc banana bread any day!).
When Schatzi's coffee came out burnt, that decided things for us - we won't be back in a hurry. We appear to be alone in our assessment! Their dumplings/tapas dinner menu looks interesting though - perhaps we'll head back to check it out at some future stage.