It’s back to work for me today but I did manage to finish off my summer holiday with a quick trip to Sydney. I had a fabulous wedding (thanks Marney and Frank) and on the way back to the airport met friends at The Grounds of Alexandria. This cafe has been on my radar for a while partly because of the food and partly because of its fantastic setting which is industrial warehouse meet farmyard complete with expansive gardens housing Kevin Bacon the pig, a vegie garden and cubby house for kids.
I quickly realised we weren’t the only people to have the idea of going to The Grounds of Alexandria that day. The staff were valet parking cars and warned us of a half hour wait for a table. Just your average Monday morning then – I’d hate to see it on a weekend.
Everywhere you look there is a a charming tableaux of flowers, fruit and vintage jam jars just begging to be Instagrammed. The food is picture perfect as well. Roast heirloom carrot salad ($18) was a riot of colours with the sweet carrots teamed with currants, wild rice and a slick of tart yoghurt. I also loved the fig salad ($17) which showcases just ripe figs along with creamy gorgonzola cheese, tender spears of asparagus and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
For those feeling the effects of a post Wedding hangover (that would be all of us) the breakfast burger ($18) delivered in terms of fried egg, bacon, avocado and mayo in a brioche bun. A must order is one of The Grounds of Alexandria’s signature dishes, the polenta chips ($5), which are golden, crispy and moreish.
As you would hope from a cafe with its own coffee roasting facility the coffee is seriously good – smooth and silky. There are also great freshly squeezed juices and iced teas all served in jam jars of course.
Despite the queues and a lack of flexibility from staff (annoyingly there are no menu substitutions or split bills) I couldn’t help but love the photogenic slice of life which The Grounds of Alexandria serves up.
Details: The Grounds of Alexandria, 7a/2 Huntley street, Alexandria, Sydney (Ph 02 9699 2225)
Damage: Reasonable. Our bill for 4 adults and 2 kids came to $110.