MELBOURNE | Something that struck me when in Ho Chi Minh City last month, was just how many cafes were open at night. Lots of busy spots filled with people enjoying coffee, tea, desserts, and dishes more commonly associated with breakfast. It’s something that’s been popular in Asia for a while, and a few spots around Melbourne have been trying out the concept too.
One of these is North Melbourne cafe Palette. By day, it’s a ‘Korean aesthetics and lifestyle’ inspired cafe, creating dishes that blend Korean and Australian elements. Their loaded Korean brioche sandwiches and house made croissants are a particular highlight. At night, the cafe transforms into Palette. At Night. The menu switches to a dessert focus, underpinned by the same philosophy as the day menu. I recently popped in for What’s On Melbourne to take a look.
The back room of the cafe is where the night action occurs, with the lights turned down low, and soothing jazz and soul playing at a low volume over the speakers. A relaxed environment, conducive to conversation. At the front, a handful of people wait for takeaway orders.
It’s things like croffles (a croissant x waffle hybrid), filled with cream and things like strawberry and pistachio, and cinnamon, There’s thick cut honey mascarpone brioche, topped with ingredients like strawberry, and my highlight of the night, Lotus biscoff. There’s also good old fashioned waffles, topped with things like yuzu cream. Flavours change regularly, depending on the season.
To drink, Palette. At Night serves up an assortment of milky and fruity lattes, and teas. The strawberry latte is refreshing and not at all sweet, with the real strawberry flavour coming through nicely. Ditto for the flavoured cream latte, which provides a counterbalance to the sweetness of the desserts.
The first time I ever travelled internationally, to Singapore in 2001, and discovered the joys of eating savoury noodles for breakfast, my perspective was forever changed on what ‘day food’ and ‘night food’ should be. The night cafe is here, and I’m all for it.
Palette. At Night
610 Queensbury Street
Telephone: 0498 489 088
Tue – Sat: 7:00pm to 10:00pm