25 Jan Humble Rays, Carlton
Gough Amontha and Sutinee Suntivatana made the move from Hobart to Melbourne, transforming what was once a motorcycle shop into this newly opened cafe. The concrete floor and white tiles are spruced up with a vibrant and colourful painted wall full of blues, greens and yellows. It’s relaxed, fun and unpretentious inside.
Chef Suntivatana is also the head of Honey Badger Dessert Cafe in Hobart, and has had a hand in cafes Tinee Eatery Work Shop and Sweeter Bangkok in Thailand. Given her experience in sweets, it’s perhaps not surprising to find that there’s a large selection of dessert-for-breakfast items including waffles, pancakes, and skookies – cookies cooked and served on skillets.
The all-day menu has a markedly Asian spin on things. There’s the Crab Meat Scramble, laid on top of coconut quinoa rice with coriander, crunchy shallot salt, and a small dish of mild sriracha mayo. It’s a simple meal, and there’s a fair bit of chilli here, though it’s easily picked off if you’re not into spicy brunches.
The Eggs Benny uses ginger braised pork belly, and instead of bread, has a miso and potato korokke. The poached egg is smothered with yuzu hollandaise, and chilli bacon jam is spread on the plate underneath it. The pork belly is a bit dry, but the croquette is crispy and moist, and the hollandaise is nice and creamy. The chilli bacon jam gives a good punchiness to the flavours of the dish.
With some excitement, we also order the Puffle Waffle, a Hong Kong egg waffle with a whole lot of delights like coconut ice cream, peanut praline, sea salt caramel sauce and shaved white chocolate. It’s the Asian dessert lover’s dream with the salted egg custard and black sesame crumb. The egg waffles are crispy, and though it sounds like a lot of different flavours on the same plate, it all works together to make a delicious sweet treat.
Humble Rays is somewhere you’ll definitely find something different to have for your daytime meal, and it will be exciting to see where the team takes it in the future.