Rustica Canteen, Hawthorn

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MELBOURNE | Rustica know what they’re doing when it comes to the cafe game in Melbourne. Their CBD and Fitzroy cafes are popular, and their fantastic sourdough is used in many other cafes across the city. The team’s newest cafe, Rustica Canteen Hawthorn, opened recently and we were invited to see how this compared to the other locations. Given Rustica’s reputation, our expectations were high. Walking inside the narrow space, at the base of the new Maple Aparment development, what’s immediately apparent is the use of natural sunlight, white and light colours, to create a pleasant atmosphere. A variety of seating is on offer – from tables and booths, through to stools that line the windows opposite the small kitchen and coffee counter.

Walking over to the counter, and the hallmarks of Rustica are all on display – a large La Marzocco espresso machine takes care of espresso duties (beans are from Rumble Coffee Roasters), while the shelves behind hold an array of bread loaves to take away. The bread, all sourdough, ranges from plain loaves and baguettes, to flavoured options like olive and basil. Looking down to the pastry counter, and it’s full of things like croissants, doughnuts, and Rustica founder and co-owner Brenton Lang’s award winning cronuts.

Another co-owner, Tristan White, is in charge of the kitchen proper, with him and his team cooking up a one page list of breakfast and lunch options. Many customer favourites are on the menu here, along with a few newcomers, like a baguette of slow-roasted lamb shoulder, red onion, cumin yoghurt, and iceberg lettuce, and Baba Ganoush topped with grilled halloumi, Roma tomatoes, poached eggs and greens.

We decided to go for Rustica’s take on the classic smashed avo on toast, served with pickled red onion, beetroot relish, Persian feta, ground chulpi corn, poached eggs and (optional) bacon. It’s a great take on the dish, with the beetroot relish in particular adding a different, sweet and tangy element to the usual expected flavours. Our other choice was the wholemeal waffle with chai poached apples, salted caramel mascarpone, candied puffed quinoa, and flaked almonds. We don’t usually go for sweet options at breakfast, but this sounded too appealing to pass up. Thankfully, none of the elements of this dish are too sweet, and the flavours all come together rather harmoniously. A pleasant surprise in a cafe scene when over the top sweetness and outrageousness seems to be all the trend.

All in all, Rustica Canteen is a great addition to Hawthorn, and succeeds in meeting the expectations that those who have visited the other Rustica Canteens will have when coming here.

Rustica Canteen (Hawthorn)

121 Power Street
Hawthorn
Victoria 3122
Australia

Telephone: (03) 9819 2018
E-mail: n/a
Website

Open
Mon – Fri: 7:00am to 4:00pm
Sat – Sun: 8:00am to 4:00pm

Rustica Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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