For meeting in the middle
Coffee with palate-cleansing bubbles
|Deceptively simple from the outside|
|Award-winning interior design|
|A little bit country|
|A little bit rock 'n' roll|
At the end of the day, though, even a well-designed, uber stylish cafe will live or die by the quality of its service and product. Top Paddock delivers on both fronts.
The operation is slick – I mentioned the rapid turnover of tables. Staff make it all seem effortless, clearing plates, taking orders and checking in with just the right frequency but not intruding on conversations; time between ordering and receiving was spot on, too.
The coffee. After a bad night's sleep with poorly child, oh how I was looking forward to a good coffee. And then my long black came out accompanied by a tiny glass of sparkling water. Posh!
As for the food, the microherbs, edible flowers and berries used in plating made for impossibly pretty porridge and drunken ginger bread. My chilli eggs didn't have the popping colour of my friends' dishes, but the chilli kick cut through the creamy feta and scrambled egg; all three dishes were delicious. Again the impression of getting the best of both worlds – there's finesse in the plating but also good-size portions; flavour-bursting but not wallet-busting.
As a typical northern suburbanite, I normally venture south about as often as I whip out the hair straighteners, but I'll head back to Top Paddock. The grass is very green.
|Ginger bread with chocolate marscapone|
|Ginger crumbs, but the plate's still a picture|
|Have you ever seen a prettier porridge?|
|Chilli scrambled eggs|