Monday, October 18, 2010
A fanboys dilemma
I'm often stuck in a difficult situtation when I'm planning a venture into the city for some breakfast, or lunch, on the days monday to saturday. The reason for this being that I'm always torn apart between breakfast and lunch as alot of the time i rarely eat breakfast in the morning because I'm A): to lazy to wake up, B): hung over and cant be fucked or C): because i know then i will be stuck in this difficult task... what is this task you ask? Well, simply, shall i go to Hardware Societe for breakfast or lunch? Because they stop breakfast at 11am :( (they do all day brunch till 2 on saturday). Now, if its one of the my days off from being a corporate slave, or I dont start working for the man 'til later that day, I usually won't rise until the bare minium of 10 am (and usually then I have to try to wake up my girlfriend to get her out of bed which takes another 30 minutes). So thus bringing me to the decision do i rush in for some god like eggs or do i causally stroll on in and enjoy a hefty lunch. When I do make that extra bit of effort though, its always worth it. Since my first visit to Hardware Societe, I was greeted by a big warm smile and friendly attitude. The fact that this hasn't ever changed is one of the things that keeps bringing me back on in. Every time i visit i feel like part of the family, they happily listen to my complaints about how seedy/tired im feeling without rolling there eyes like they just wish for me to shut up and order like so many other cafes. Then of course the main reason I return again and again is the food. The fare at Hardware is in a french/spanish bistro style which, of course, is music to my ears. Having pretty much eaten everything on the menu I can almost say everything is pretty kick ass, most of the menu often leaning to more rich and robust flavours but still with a few lighter options. I won't list it all as it has recently changed menu (and I also lost all of my photos from there) but I will give you a brief run down...
For breakfast make sure you order the eggs at least once! They do a few varieties (baked, poach, scrambeled) but I can't stop praising the omelet's they make, rich, fluffy, sexy and bursting with flavour. The confit duck omelet, yes i said duck, is a heartstoppingly decadent way to start your day and sure to bring a smile to your face. The fried brioche is also a star as well with a crisp outside and a buttery, bready goodness being trapped on the inside. You can see how it has become a favourite amongst their regulars, including my lovely lady.
white truffle scented wild mushrooms
As I was saying though, due to my slackness and wine-o lifestyle, I usually end up at Hardware for lunch. This of course is not something to frown about, it's only something that makes you want to dance and sing.
Everyday they have changing empadnadas and tarts which are always too die for.
Also there is a daily changing special... Steak Friday's, Paella Wednesday or Pork Tuesday's, there's always something new and mouth watering coming out of the kitchen so your tastebuds will never get bored. Some staples that have survived the changing menu though are grand things like the confit duck with is crisp skin and juicy and succulent flesh, it will make you punch yourself in the groin for not getting here sooner.
Your crouch is being punched right now isn't?
And if somehow you're still feeling a little peckish after all that, you could always pick up some of their amazing macaron's (which always have fast little feet for running out the door), they come in a range of delectable flavours and will give Adriano Zumbo a run for his money.
So in the end no matter what time I wake up and drag my self out of bed, I'm always happy to know that Hardware will be waiting for me, brekafast or lunch, with amazing food and service that always brightens my day. Like all great places, word always gets out quickly and Hardware is always packed (no reservation policy) but you should always be able to get a seat shortly if none are available. In the mean time you can always grab a mag from the magazine ladder and just be jealous of the venue and cry that your home doesnt look like it (see for yourself when you go).
In summary, Hardware Societe is an amazing little cafe which is sure to become a Melbourne icon in the cafe and resturant world, with its amazing quailty of food, value (very rarely anything goes above $15) and the great vibe it has, i recommend you go there before too much groin punching is needed.
Mat of course pays for all his meals at Hardware Societe because last time he tried to pay in monopoly money the cops where called.