76 Michael Street, Fitzroy North (map)
One of my first outings in Melbourne after I got back from overseas was brunch with nine months pregnant Schatzi and friends at Mitte. Named after the Berlin suburb, Mitte is in hipsterville North Fitzroy (Melbourne's "whitest" suburb, according to Stuff White People Like author Michael Lallo), in a quiet residential street near Edinburgh Gardens. The former corner shop has been fitted out simply and beautifully, with white walls and big windows facing east and west.
For brunch, D ordered the bircher style muesli, made with apple juice, yoghurt and nuts and topped with fruit salad ($11.50). Looked good, especially the vivid fruit.
J had the Croque Monsieur with Dijon mustard, béchamel, gypsy ham and St Claire Swiss cheese ($12.50). I had a taste and it was nicely creamy - like the fact that it was proper Dijon too.
Schatzi ordered the three cheese omelette ($15): Meredith marinated goats fetta, Grana Padano and buffalo mozzarella served with sourdough toast and topped with a salad of green olives, cherry tomatoes, rocket and parmesan. Supercheesy - as Schatz went into labour later that evening, I can't help but wonder whether or not this omelette was partly responsible... :)
At a house party the night before, I'd been discussing North Fitzroy with my charming (and very drunk) friend J. When I'd told him I was planning on going to Mitte for brunch, he'd clapped his hand on my shoulder and slurred that I HAD to try the Mitte chickpea bake (reviewed by Michael here). "Uh huh", I'd mumbled.
But alas I don't care much for chickpeas, so I decided to try something else that caught my eye (sorry J!). I had the free range poached eggs Caesar style ($15) which were served with sourdough toast shmeared with garlic aioli, crispy bacon, cos lettuce, shaved parmesan and anchovies. The aioli and anchovies made it a pretty hardcore dish as far as brunches go, but it was really delicious - just what my hangover needed. Dench's sourdough is the best.
While I'm not sure that I'd go so far as to award it Breakfast of the Year (as the 2009 Cheap Eats Guide did), we were still pretty impressed with Mitte. The vanilla cupcakes looked so good that when we ordered a second round of coffees after our plates were cleared, we decided to also order a cupcake and to split it four ways. Soft and fluffy!