Bread & Jam for Frances

This cute little cafe tucked away in the back of Readings bookstore on Glenferrie road is run by the same people as the famous Dench bakery. I love Dench’s wonderful sourdough so I decided to pop in here on a sunny Saturday morning.

The coffee wasn’t bad, although it was far too hot for my liking. I’m certainly no barista but as far as I know lattes aren’t supposed to be served boiling hot.

I ordered the corn and spinach potato cakes with avocado and salsa ($15.50). The potato cakes were lovely and crispy but they fell apart very easily and were a little bit bland. The tomato salsa was bold and punchy with plenty of ┬álime juice and fresh coriander, which helped the potato cakes along. It wasn’t a bad meal but it felt like it was missing something. It could have done with crumbled goat’s cheese, labne or even creme fraiche just to add some sharpness.

They had a lovely looking selection of cakes and pastries in the display and I ended up giving in to the temptation of the beesting. The soft, bread-like yeast cake topped with caramelised almonds gave way to a smooth and creamy vanilla bean custard filling. It was excellent. Kind of like a posh vanilla slice.

The verdict

The food and coffee were quite good overall and the service was friendly. There was a good selection of breakfast/lunch items, cakes and loaves of fresh Dench bread. It’s nice to be able to go to a good quality, reputable cafe that isn’t totally up itself, doesn’t charge $20 for eggs on toast and doesn’t have a line out the door (ahem, Friends of Mine).

Now I must go back and try the duck sandwich…

Bread & Jam for Frances
1/701 Glenferrie Road
Hawthorn

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