Fo0die dined as a guest of Ivy and Pearl and as such, the rating does not give any consideration to customer service.
When we arrived at Ivy and Pearl (opened start of April 2018), we were pleasantly surprised to see that the venue had taken residence at what once was Funkie Brewster cafe we had previously visited.
The name of the cafe comes from the hubby and wifey duo’s own kids which is very sentimental. Wanting to be known for seasonal good food, with little touches of middle eastern throughout the menu that can’t be found at other cafes around the area, we were excited but also curious how the venue had incorporated middle eastern flavours into their cafe menu.
On entry, there’s bench style seats against the window looking out of the cafe. The counter is on the right hand side with seating on the left side against some cushion padded blue seats.
At the back is the kitchen and beyond that an automatic door that swings open to additional seating in their outdoor natural light filled courtyard.
We sat in the venue’s outdoor decked area which is fully enclosed and under cover with split systems and ceiling heaters. It’s pram friendly with ramps and spacious enough to seat large tables of diners.
Looking through the venue’s A4 sized menu, the drinks menu has all the usual coloured lattes; turmeric, beetroot and matcha as well as shakes and smoothies. The all day breakfast menu contains the usual suspects of toast and eggs, the classics like smashed avo with a slight middle eastern twist with the sumac and tahini mousse to the more hearty dishes like lamb shoulder salad and chicken burger.
Matcha latte is by Matcha Maiden (one of Mr J’s favourite) and is sweetened with honey which wasn’t overly sweet (just the way Mr J prefers it). Well balanced and not too grassy or seaweed. My mocha was more on the chocolate side than the coffee (the venue serves coffee from Axil Coffee Roasters).
The two signature dishes are the truffle house hash and sticky date waffle (below) which we of course had to order. The truffle house hash was crusty on the outside with a mash like texture on the inside. It was well seasoned with thyme and garlic and served with three types of mushrooms (enoki, mushroom cups and shiitake) and a delicious truffle oil ricotta.
The slow cooked lamb shoulder salad had a lovely mix of textures; from the almonds to the hints of pomegranate and red onion which made the dish very flavoursome. The lovely middle eastern addition of sumac labne (yoghurt cheese) was beautifully presented on the edge of the plate which let you pick whether you wanted to have it or not.
And finally the second signature dish, the sticky date waffle which was no doubt the highlight of all the dishes we had. It had the sticky date flavour that you would expect with a yummy cinnamon ice cream to complement.
With a menu which seems to cater for all, we think the venue has delicious food and while the serving sizes may look small, they actually fell in the ‘just right’ bucket (in our opinion) in terms of pricing and belly filling.
Dishes that make up this review
- Slow cooked lamb shoulder salad; ras el hanout slow cooked lamb shoulder, tossed through a salad of pearl cous cous, chickpeas, red onion, pomegranate, toasted almonds and a soft herb salad with sumac labne ($21.90)
- Truffle house hash; housemade garlic and thyme hashbrown, seasonal mushrooms, ricotta, kale pesto and truffle oil with a poached egg ($17.90)
- Sticky date waffles; medjool dates, salted caramel, oat clusters, house made cinnamon ice cream and freeze dried yoghurt ($16.90)
- Matcha latte ($4.50)
- Mocha ($5)