The bad end of Flinders Lane hots up: Five & Dime Bagels and T By Luxbite

My day job is on Flinders Lane and to most people who are into food that sounds like a pretty good location.  But sadly the Private Media offices are not at the cool end of Flinders Lane, instead we are down the King street end aka culinary wasteland.  Last year that changed with the opening of The Grain Store and now in the same building (called “The Archway”) a host of other little cafes are opening.

T by Luxbite action

T by Luxbite action

Alongside the excellent Altius Specialty Coffee there is also 5 & Dime Bagel and T by Luxbite.  More cafes are set to open as well – the renaissance of the dodgy end of Flinders street begins! 

5 & Dime Bagel
You may already be familiar with 5 & Dime Bagel as the bagels first popped up at farmers markets and then at cafes around town. The bagels quickly gathered their own fan club thanks to their authentic New York taste.  Here you can go direct to the source: big glass windows look into the bakery where all the bagels are made and the small wood panelled shop has a few seats and does a brisk takeaway trade in  coffee and bagels.  Each day you get your choice of bagels and of fillings.  The bagels are only $2 for hand rolled, baked and seed encrusted beauties.   Fancy fillings like smoked salmon are an additional $5 and things like bacon cream cheese (so good) will cost extra but if you just stick with standard fillings like avocado and tomato you pay a bargainous $3 for your lunch.  

All the bagel flavours on offer at 5 & Dime

All the bagel flavours on offer at 5 & Dime

Essentials
Details: 5 & Dime Bagel, 16 Katherine Place, Melbourne (Ph: 96212128) Open 7am-3pm.  Just a note that to get to 5 & Dime you actually have to walk down the little laneway past T by Luxbite. It’s a little hidden. 
Damage: Total bargain.
8/10

Dill bagel with smoked salmon and BACON cream cheese filling at 5 & Dime

Dill bagel with smoked salmon and BACON cream cheese filling at 5 & Dime

T by Luxbite
My reasoning is that after I’ve eaten such a bargain lunch at 5 & Dime Bagels I can then totally justify heading to T by Luxbite for dessert.  This jewel box of a store is absolutely tiny – all there is to it is a counter filled with sweet treats.  T by Luxbite has a much more limited range than the original Luxbite in Prahran – the goodies on offer are limited to tarts and macarons.  But it’s all about quality not quantity here.  I’m slowly eating my way through the range.  There’s the cult Kuma tart with its cute bear face and chocolate and banana filling but my favourite so far is the Yuzu – the delicate vanilla tart is topped with soft and squidgy matcha marshmallows and perfect ruby red raspberries.   

The cult Koya tart at T by Luxbite

The cult Kuma tart at T by Luxbite

Essentials
Details: T by Luxbite,  2/517 Flinders Lane, Melbourne (Ph 03 9629 9662) Open 10am-7pm. 
Damage: Reasonable. Tarts are around the $7 mark each.  
9/10

Posted by: on January 29th, 2015     1 Comment »

Category: Bakery, Breakfast, Brunch, Cafe, City, Coffee, Take Away Tags: , , , ,
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Seeing the Australian Open in style in the Emirates Suite

How was your Australia Day long weekend? I woke up on Australia Day in a tent as we were camping for the long weekend in the High Country near Howqua.  Then I ended the day in a tent as well, but a very different sort of tent, the Emirates Suite at the Australian Open.

Pimms Cup at the Emirates Suite

Pimms Cup at the Emirates Suite

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Posted by: on January 27th, 2015     1 Comment »

Category: Gourmet Event Tags:
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The Royal Croquet Club: making croquet ok

My mother in law is a crack croquet player and for years had a bumper sticker on the back of her car which said “croquet is ok”. She was ahead of her time as croquet has suddenly become cool this year with the advent of The Royal Croquet Club popping up for two weeks at Birrarung Marr on the banks of the Yarra river.

Pimms at the Royal Croquet Club

Pimms at the Royal Croquet Club

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Posted by: on January 21st, 2015     No Comments »

Category: City Tags:
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Charcoal Lane: Chewing the fat over possum sausage and wallaby

Ever eaten possum sausage? What about wallaby sirloin or emu fillet? All these dishes are on the menu at Fitzroy’s Charcoal Lane a social enterprise which serves up distinctly Australian food. When I lived in London people always used to ask me what Australian food was.  It’s hard to answer as Australian food is hard to define.  I would usually mumble something about great produce and influences from all over the world.  One thing that doesn’t happen enough in Australian cooking is the use of native ingredients.  I believe this is something that is gradually changing and restaurants like Charcoal Lane, which champion the use of native produce, are really leading the charge.

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Tasting plate at Charcoal Lane

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Posted by: on January 19th, 2015     4 Comments »

Category: City Tags: , , , ,
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How to make cinnamon and ricotta pancakes

Fragrant, sweet and earthy; cinnamon is one of my favourite spices.  It’s also incredibly good for you with the highest anti-oxidant properties you can find in nature.  I’m not the sort of person who likes to cut back so you won’t find any New Year diets here on Gourmet Chick. But what I can advocate heartily is more, particularly when it’s more of something like cinnamon which is so delicious and good for you as well.

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Posted by: on January 15th, 2015     3 Comments »

Category: City Tags: ,
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