Where: 49 Pearson St Brunswick
When: 7 days 7:30am-4pm
Contact: (03) 9005 8680
Yes another cool Brunswick café, who’d have thought? But wait, this one doesn’t think so highly of itself that your seat feels like a ‘found art’ installation. There are plenty of comfortable places to dine both inside, and out in the courtyard which means it’s easy to get a table you are really happy with. There’s a very cute child-friendly theme with recycled school chairs, a Lollypop-Lady sign and kids’ murals here and there. The stained glass frontage gives the whole place a very homely feel. We sat out in the courtyard, enjoyed a warm shady spot and listened to the eclectic music piping from the speaker; a playlist I’ve decided was 80% excellent.
The menu is vast but full of such interesting and unique choices; it won’t have you “glossing over” but rather spending a really dedicated amount of time on your choice. The ‘breakfast’ and ‘lunch’ sections didn’t appear to be limited by any time constraints, with my Dining Partner ordering a breakfast item at 1.30 in the afternoon, no problems. The waitress was really quick to have us seated and with drinks straight away; great service.
Spaghetti special with tomato, fresh spinach, prosciutto and pecorino ($17.50)
I opted for the spaghetti special with tomato, fresh spinach, prosciutto and pecorino ($17.50). While the breakfast-fiend ordered the granola with poached fruits and yogurt ($10.50). We were both really happy with our meals which arrived without much delay. The spaghetti was a generous size and completely abundant with spinach and prosciutto and the sauce was very fresh, being more deconstructed tomato than puree. It was on the salty side but I really enjoyed it nonetheless. The large wisps of fresh pecorino were great.
The granola was fragrant with toasted caramel notes and plenty of sunflower seeds and nuts which contrasted with the soft, heady, mix of marinated peaches, prunes and blueberries. It came with a sweet vanilla yogurt but I felt would have been better with a tarter one as the whole dish ended up being too sweet and impossible to finish.
Granola with poached fruits and vanilla yogurt ($10.50)
It’s great for the West-side of Brunswick to have a café like John Gorilla, if I was a local I’d be there every week. I’m sure most customers would leave with a sense that they’d experienced good value from the experience, as the café doesn’t cut corners on portions or service. Plus they split the bill; fantastic. I’m already planning my revisit for coffee and those tempting muffins I eyed off at the counter.