Why did the blogger (who doesn’t drink coffee) cross town to visit Axil Coffee Roasters in Hawthorn?
No, not to get to the other side. Because Axil Coffee Roasters do more than just roast coffee – they put on a magnificent spread from the kitchen, 7 days a week starting from the wee hours of the morning.
The signage outside the venue is understated and you wouldn’t imagine that behind the awning there’s a vast warehouse space filled with a black walls, polished concrete, greenery and timber. Not to mention a coffee roastery and barista training school too – all behind glass so you can have a gawp on your way to the loos.
This is one serious cafe.
Anyway, it goes without saying that the coffee must be excellent (the cafe won Best Coffee in The Age Good Cafe Guide 2013), so let’s switch to the food. It was pretty adventurous fare and made it difficult to choose.
Because I’m a huge smoked salmon fan I went with the housemade salmon pastrami ($20). It was a generous mound of thinly sliced and lightly spiced raw fish draped over a tangy yellow pickled zucchini and some crunchy celeriac croquettes. The wobbly poached egg on top oozed yolk so luckily for the spoonful of beetroot relish cutting through the richness. It was a beautifully presented tower of breakfast with lots of bright hues and vivid flavours.
Not content to try just one breakfast dish I ordered a breakfast dessert – red velvet pancakes. These are cupcakes disguised in pancake form! Three ethereally light deep crimson pancakes topped with a decadent mix of raspberries and a cream cheese ganache instead of the usual cream cheese frosting ($16.50). The cherry on top was the inky black sesame icecream which added a cool intensity to the mix. These spectacular pancakes are not to be missed if you have a sweet tooth!
I was delighted with the service at Axil Coffee Roasters too. They didn’t raise an eyebrow when I declined to order coffee and brought me newspapers and the food very promptly. As I was leaving the tables were starting to fill up with cyclists and young families doing the early morning shift.
With a reputation for good coffee and food of such excellent quality, no doubt Axil Coffee Roasters will continue to attract people needing that hit of caffeine and/or interesting, well-priced meals.