After wandering down Hardware Lane and being told there was a 40 minute wait to another brunch place, we got antsy and decided to check out the multitude of hip looking new cafes that had popped up over the course of a few months.
We settled on # (Hash) a warm, inviting, minimally decorated space which utilised all the space without becoming too crowded, and definitely keeping with the hip(ster) vibe. That, and the menu was too tempting to walk away from (and there was no wait! HUZZAH! Disclaimer: this will change, very, very soon, trust me.)
# have only been open for five weeks, but good lord they are doing well for themselves. The menu offers your standard brunch fare like smashed avocado and pork belly, but the extreme quality the chefs in the kitchen take this too is incredible.
|HASH Hot Chocolate|
The first thing that blew me away was the presentation of their HASH Hot Chocolate ($6.0), which looked like it was straight out of Heston’s kitchen. Presented with a sky scraping tower of freshly spun white fairy floss, and a conical flask of MORK Dark 85% Cacao Chocolate next to it, served on a wooden board, there’s no way you’re beating this beast on presentation. When the hot choc is poured over the floss, it melts away like some crazy CGI-vampire bursting into flames on the big screen, into a puddle of sweetened hot choc. Beautiful and sweet and delicious in a way that normal sugar just won’t produce. This drink was incredible. It is on par with Seven Seeds’ hot chocolate, though in a totally different way. /endgush
[Protip: Though visually stunning, the actual act of pouring requires a bit of finesse, as the fairy floss will end up buckling and spilling all over the table. Be careful as you pour otherwise you’ve lost all the sweet.]
|Leek & Cheddar Croquettes|
I was tossing up between so many dishes on #’s menu, but eventually settled for the Leek and cheddar croquettes, cauliflower puree, ham hock, caolo nero and a tumeric poached egg ($19.5) and was not disappointed. The croquettes were perfectly fried, with a crispy outside and a fluffy inner, which was full of flavour from the cheddar and more subtle leek. Add onto that, the smooth cauliflower puree and ham hock to finish off the full flavours of a very satisfying dish. The only flavour that was lost on me was the tumeric poached egg, I couldn’t taste it at all, but it did make for a very pretty yellow stained poached egg.
Crisp corn arepas & crushed avocado, dressed w/ cherry tomatoes, chili, coriander & grilled lime ($16.5). This had a pretty cool mexican style twist to the normal smashed avocado you see around town; light and fragrant avocado mix due to the lime, and served with crunchy flatbread arepas made from maize dough. This dish definitely needs a side of bacon if you’re a meat lover.
I’ve never seen a brunch place go the full hog and serve up a class surf’n’turf like #’s Chorizo, seared scallops on toasted s’dough w/ a fried egg, chili and a white bean spread ($20.5). Though this sounds like a whopping meal, it is done tastefully. This may not be the most cohesive and creative dish that # has, but how can you go wrong with perfectly fried chorizo slices and seared tender, plump scallops. The white bean spread is subtle, hiding under the fried egg, but all together the dish is a winner, if you’re after a dish which can’t lose.
|Slow Roasted Pork Belly|
This Slow roasted pork belly, goat’s cheese, pickled mustard seeds, hazelnuts & textures of apple ($20.5) was quite impressive. I feel there was a lot of deconstruction and molecular gastronomy that went into this dish. The textures of apple consisted of freeze dried apple pieces placed upright in goat’s cheese (stunning), accompanied by apple sauce and poached apple pieces. The pork belly was succulent and fatty, the only complaint being the skin wasn’t as crispy as other pork bellys. The mustard seeds added a nice kick and the hazelnuts, though erroneous, participated in the game everyone plays called texture.
|Grilled Banana & Pecan Loaf|
This was everything a dessert ever needed to attain perfection. Grilled banana & pecan loaf with macadamias, milk crumbs, blueberries & burnt honey marscapone, white chocolate custard ($18.5). Sinfully soft banana loaf with a crusty exterior, slightly candied with caramelised sugar and lots of nutty crunch to add to the texture. The burnt honey marscapone was not over-bearingly sweet, so you could use as much or as little to tone down the dish. Similarly, the white chocolate custard was the added sweetness, and though I could drink this up every day, if you wanted to avoid adding more sugar to the dish, you didn’t have to touch it. I could eat this every day, gain 5000kgs and not regret a thing.
TL;DR I’m counting down the days till I can feel this satisfied in my belly again. Sorry Seven Seeds, the Lannisters send their regards.