The Local Cafe
5/5 Dayni Rating
I put the shout out on Instagram last night to all my favourite cafes, because we're nearing the end of our lemon feature, and I wanted to be sure I hadn't missed out on something fabulous! So when The Local Cafe told me that they had Lemon Curd and Mascarpone Sourdough Crumpets on the menu it was too good to be true, because today I ran out of ALL my breakfast cereals, and so breakfast was wide open for a lemon breakfast date.
Before I'd even walked through the door at The Local Cafe, I was in love, it's freshly painted blue facade nestles within a very stylishly eclectic, shabby chic interior, and I ADORE IT! With interesting pieces of decor scattered through the cafe, the work of local artists hanging on the walls, big pendant lights, a stunning vintage look coffee machine, reclaimed wood table tops and a spread of very random yet complimentary chairs contrast against the plywood walls and polished concrete floors. Although it sounds random and overwhelming, it all comes together to create a space that's perfectly balanced, birthing an atmosphere which feels both familiar and homely as well new and exciting.
Much of this wonderful atmosphere has to be attributed to Tracey herself. It was heartwarming to hear the banter and witness the close relationship that Tracey has with her customers. I even overheard that some of her customers, those who would usually spend Christmas alone, come to her house for a gathering on Christmas day and they all celebrate together. Isn't that just so special! I can see why this town adores this cafe and Tracey! She was an absolute delight to chat with, her passion and love for her business and her customers are evident, and it's contagious! I mean, how could I not be passionate about a place that's as passionate about lemon curd as The Local! Tracey makes a 40 egg batch of lemon curd EVERY WEEK! But their lemon curd isn't the only thing that's baked in-house, far from it, everything is! From the chutneys to the sauces, to the cakes, biscuits and curds, they're all made from scratch, and Tracey makes sure her cafe caters for all! So if you're vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free or gluten-free, you'll be able to enjoy a cuppa and a cake at The Local too!
And the food! OMG! The dishes coming out of that kitchen could have stood their own in a fancy Melbourne establishment, it was so refreshing to see such beautifully presented (and tasting) food come out of a little place filled with so much love! I am soo glad that I forgot that box of weetbix, because this mornings' breakfast was by far the best breakfast I have had in a loong time! The sourdough crumpets were divine, beautifully fluffy and the perfect balance between savoury and sweet so as to go with either. The lemon curd was a glorious colour and texture, with just enough lemon so as you can taste it but not so much to turn it tart and overpower everything else on the plate. And that perfect little dollop of mascarpone on top lent a wonderfully creamy texture and a subtle flavour so as to ensure that with each bite the lemon curd shone instead of feeling repetitive. The presentation was immaculate, and I felt so guilty taking that first bite, but the guilt quickly gave way to greed and I was mopping up every dreg of lemon curd with that gloriously fluffy crumpet.
Lets take a moment to talk about those crumpets a little. One of the very few things that aren't made in-house, these sourdough crumpets, of which I can quite confidently say are the best crumpets I've ever had IN MY LIFE are made by Holy Crumpets in Carlton, and they are absolutely divine! I usually find crumpets quite doughy and bland, but not these! Holy Crumpets, being made with sourdough, have an ever so slightly sour aftertaste that just works so well in a crumpet! Kind of like in the same way that the slightly sour buttermilk makes the best pancakes, sourdough definitely makes for the best crumpets!
Obviously, we're going to have to recommend anything and everything sporting their house-made lemon curd, and not only because I love it, and not only because Tracey loves it... but because in the hour I spend sitting in The Local Cafe this morning, I only heard one person... ONE PERSON, in an almost full cafe, order anything other than a lemon-something, and that says something!
So, if you find yourself at The Local, I'd recommend trying their Vanilla Yoghurt Muffins with Lemon Curd, their Buckwheat Banana Waffles with Lemon Curd or their Sourdough Crumpets with Lemon Curd.