11 Jun Patch Cafe, Richmond
Paleo cafes are still scarce, though their numbers are slowly growing. This addition to the fold arrived mid-last year, when co-founders Tom Davidson and Jacob Burke sought to carry over their passion for clean eating into a new eatery. This eatery is Patch, located within the heritage-restored channel 9 studio in Richmond.
A little walk past the front gate brought us to a long and narrow space, with an open kitchen occupying much of it. Indoors seating was limited, but there were outdoors tables available too, today occupied by people wanting to take advantage of the recently-scarce sunlight. The interior has retained the airy feel of the former studio, including the high ceiling, exposed rafters and foil insulation.
The unpretentious and simple space was designed by Studio You Me, and it suits the food philosophy perfectly. Patch’s paleo-inspired menu has been put together by Brett Tait, with all-day breakfast and lunch items, fresh fruit and veggie juices and coffee by Code Black.
My choice for today was the wild mushrooms ($19). Shiitake, woodear (aka black fungus) and oyster mushrooms flavoured with garlic, truffle oil and thyme were tumbled over bread, and supported two beautifully poached eggs. The fragrance of the truffle oil wafted up and taunted me, so tried to take my photos as quickly as possible. Since we were in a paleo cafe, I had opted for paleo bread rather than sourdough and, well, how often do I get to try paleo bread? The bread was dense and a little cake-like and had a subtle, interesting flavour. There was a slight acidity present in the dish, possibly from vinegar on the poached eggs. Normally I don’t enjoy the flavour of vinegar with my eggs, but in this case it was barely noticeable, and when I did taste it, it helped to lift the flavours of the mushrooms and paleo toast a little.
I looove nuts. If I hadn’t seen the truffle oil addition to the eggs, the Patch bircher would have been my first choice. Fortunately A2 picked it so I still got to have a taste. The bircher was composed of activated hazelnuts and almonds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, goji berries, apricots, orange, vanilla bean, coconut, poached fig, coconut nectar and a dollop of Coyo yoghurt. Sounds like a mouthful, but it was very good. Coyo is a brand of yoghurt made from coconut milk on the Sunshine Coast. We found it to be firm and tart, sort of like natural yoghurt though its texture was not quite smooth – more like a thick, textured mousse. As expected, the Patch bircher had plenty of crunch, and sweetness from the fruits, which was tempered by the Coyo yoghurt. Just look at that texture!
If you’re after a paleo-friendly eatery, or just wanting something a little different, Patch certainly fits the bill.
Richmond, VIC, 3121
(03) 9029 0328