Two weeks ago I went to Melbourne with M to *further celebrate* my 21st birthday and truth be told, I was quite excited. So many people had told me "Melbourne is amazing...I would move in a heartbeat" - with such strong statement comes greater intrigue. The last time I visited Melbourne I was probably only 8 and still wearing headbands so my memory of the city was beyond vague. After some quick foodie research, both M & I decided that Hardware Societe was the way to go for our first stop - it is ranked number 1 on Best Melbourne Restaurants on Urbanspoon and has over 186 blog post reviews.
Well now I'll be contributing at 187 :)
With that much hype, it's impossible to resist.
I must say the transport system in Melbourne was super confusing for us and all the laneways didn't make our lives any easier. The famous Hardware Societe is tucked subtly within Hardware Street and despite us arriving quite early, around 9 ish - we were shocked to see a line! By then we were starving but also extra excited at the same time. Oh and also freezing because Melbourne totally didn't get the memo that Spring had arrived and instead decided to treat us to some crazy cold winds. Let's just say I'm glad I didn't know anyone in Melbourne because my hair was just...everywhere.
Good news was that we didn't wait too long - around 10 minutes in we were already seated inside the cosy cafe on the bar table where we saw all the chefs in action. The interiors are really warm with bright pops of colour here and there. The constant hustle of people moving in and out proves just how popular Hardware Societe is. Atmosphere was definitely great for a casual catchup!
Not sure if you can see but how cute are the teacups hanging in the background behind the counter?
Breakfast All Day - nothing excites me more than places that do breakfast ALL DAY.
But FYI, lunch starts from 11:30am :)
We had boarded a 6:45am flight so we were both in desperate need of caffeine. As per usual I stuck with my favourite order of Cappuccino ($3.50) whilst M went for Flat White ($3.50). Both came nice and hot with a creamy froth - perfect a cold Melbourne day! But if you ask me whether Melbourne coffee was better than Sydney, then I'd say no - they taste the same to me.
As I was the birthday girl, obviously I called dibs on the most popular dish :P The Baked Eggs ($17) with Chorizo Sausage, Potato, Piquillo Peppers, Mahon Cheese, Toasted Almonds and Alioli was every breakfast-lover's dream come true. The eggs came in a beautiful rustic pot with a deliciously fragrant aroma that caused both M & I to salivate.
The chorizo added the extra spice into the flavours of the dish and overall it was just amazingly tasty and addictive. The eggs were gooey and the almonds were crunchy...everything just meshed together in perfection and I made sure to pair each spoonful with a bite of sourdough bread. Seriously perfection.
By the time you've demolished the pot and the bread, you'd be feeling quite full - but the good kind :)
M's order did not pale in comparison at all. The Fried Eggs ($18) with Jamon, Crispy Polenta, Oven Dried Tomatoes and Manchego Cheese was plated beautifully to showcase all the bright colours of the ingredients. The eggs were delicious with the jamon and I did find myself stealing a couple of bites from M's plate after every spoonful of my equally scrumptious dish. Yes, greediness is a fatal human flaw. But one that is totally acceptable when it comes to stealing your other halfs' food.
How amazing does it look? The eggs sat neatly on top of a super crunchy piece of bread, which added oomph and substance to the dish. YUM...
Unfortunately we were both way too stuffed to eat anything else even though I was tempted by their sweet offerings...
The Hardware Societe also sells spreads and jams - loved the cute display!
Overall the Hardware Societe did live up to the hype as an awesome brunch spot - I can definitely see why the locals and non locals love it. Eggs were fantastic and honestly when you've got that signature ingredient perfected, your breakfast/brunch dishes are sure to be a winner. There are so many options on the menu, so whether you like your eggs baked, fried or scrambled, there's something here to satisfy your breakfast callings.
Whilst it may be a pain for some to wait in line and the prices are not exactly super cheap, I say it's still totally worth checking out.
The Hardware Societe
118-120 Hardware St
Melbourne VIC 3000
03 9078 5992
Labels: Brunch, Cafe, Melbourne