Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Breakfast Series - Plenty over at West End

I love going out for breakfast and I'm not alone, it seems as if everyone wants to check out the latest Brisbane breakfast hot spot, which seems to change with stark regularity.  One of the hottest places to check out for some time has been Plenty, over in West End and I've been keen to check it out for ages. I'd have gone earlier too, if it wasn't for the fact that Plenty does not open on Sunday mornings, which is our normal morning for breakfast out.  Drats!

You might be thinking, why not just go on a Saturday, damn it!!  And its a good point, except SC has her personal training sessions on a Saturday morning and we almost never get away for breakfast as a consequence.  That all changed unexpectedly over the weekend and SC was not feeling up to the rigours of PT torture, but it did open up a window of opportunity, which was quickly filled with a trip to West End.

It was a rainy and miserable morning, too wet for us to walk the short(ish) distance to West End, so we hopped in the car and cruised on over to look for a park.  For those in the know, this is no easy feat, with the West End markets dominating the area on a Saturday morning, so SC did the usual 'dump-n-run', so I could score a seat.  Located on Montague Road, just around the corner from the start of Stanley Street, Plenty had plenty of seats available once I'd been dumped by the sidewalk near the entrance.  I was able to score a great seat and sat around for some time before SC made her way into the cafe, brolly in hand.  Apparently, she'd had to park quite some way away!

While I'd been waiting for SC, I'd managed to have a decent look around the cafe, which was located in a big warehouse type environment, that looked (purposefully) like an incomplete building site in parts and funky cafe in the middle.  A huge looking kitchen was down at the very rear of the cafe, with extra seating tucked around the corner.  It was a very interesting looking little cafe, with lots of seating spread out over the area, including a second story, that again looked like an incomplete building with exposed wood beams.

The menu at Plenty was written out on a huge black board over the side of the cafe and had a mostly contemporary sounding menu.  So contemporary in fact that SC wondered if there would be anything that she'd want to eat, thinking that she'd have to go something simple, like the Avocado on toast. She'd actually felt like something sweet and was dismayed to see that the only option was a carrot pancake, which was definitely not on her agenda!  As she wandered back to our table, a little despondent, I caught sight of an option she'd love and ran over to ask if she'd seen the pikelets?!  It was the last item on the menu and she'd completely missed it, so score for SC.

It's counter service at Plenty, so I joined the queue (which had grown in the ten minutes since arriving) and placed our orders.  I'd also ordered a half strength latte for SC and a berry smoothie for myself.  It wasn't long before my smoothie arrived, which was perhaps a little thin for my liking and I'd wondered if I'd made a mistake in getting it with ice cream instead of yoghurt, which would have given the smoothie a little more substance.  It possibly could have used a few more berries as well.  It was another five or so minutes before SC's coffee showed up and we were starting to get worried that the breakfast would appear before the coffee, a bit no-no for SC. 

You don't often see pikelets on a menu, it's usually pancakes or waffles.  I've always wondered what the real difference between a pikelet and a pancake is and to the casual observer, there is not really much.  But to the breakfast aficionado, pikelets are smaller and the batter is thicker, where as pancakes are generally flatter and much larger.  The pikelets that SC ordered were simply but beautifully presented with glistening strawberries and a dollop of mascarpone cream and vanilla syrup.  There was a beautiful caramelisation on the crust that added a great and slightly crunch texture.  There was just enough cream to balance out the pikelets and the strawberries added some wonderful freshness - yum!

I'd ordered the scrambled eggs on toast with heirloom tomatoes and grilled bacon, which is pretty traditional fare for me.  My plate was again simply but beautifully presented with the most amazing looking scrambled eggs I've seen in a while, they were just perfect.  There were covered in a garnish that I quickly discarded, so I could dig into the eggs, which were stunning in their perfection and creaminess.  I tackled my heirloom tomatoes next and got quite the surprise.  Instead of the roasted tomatoes I'd been expecting, they were a kaleidoscope of different coloured tomatoes in a salad. Once I was over my shock, I quite liked the tomatoes and the dressing that accompanied it.  I'd saved my bacon to last, it was beautiful and full flavoured with the only problem being that there was only one rasher!

Wow, we'd both really loved our breakfast choices, which had components that were same-same-but-different but still resembled some of our favourite ingredients.  All of the food that we tried was beautiful and full of great flavours and very more(ish) with the only improvement that I could see being the berry smoothie (I'd definitely get the yoghurt next time).

Plenty doesn't have table service and you need to score a seat, order and then wait for the meal to arrive, which is not such a problem in a busy cafe.  We did get a little nervous with the large gap between my smoothie arriving and SC's coffee, to the point where SC was worried that the food would come first and she would lose interest in the coffee.  Thankfully this didn't happen and while the timing could have been better, it all worked out in the end.

We found Plenty to be one of the funkier little cafes we've been to and the food was just superb.  It's an interesting layout, especially how part of the space feels half complete and the other half feeling very funky and contemporary.  It's a shame that Plenty is only open on Saturday mornings, we found the food and space to be so inviting that we'd love to go back more often.  I guess with SC's PT session on Saturdays, this might be a little hard.....

Well, next time she misses PT, we will have to head over again

I made a tactical error by getting ice cream with my smoothie, next time it will be the yoghurt
The pikelets looked amazing
And another angle
My breakfast was simple but delicious
The heirloom tomato salad was different but quite nice with the eggs and bacon
Inside of Plenty
You certainly will not forget where you are!
Plenty is everywhere!
It's quite a big space

Plenty on UrbanspoonPlenty

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