The thumbs-up emoji signage for Naughty Boy gives an indication of the tongue-in-cheek flavour of this Carlton North cafe.
The space that used to be Residential Kitchen has been turned into a fun daytime venue by the former owners of Mama Bear in Flemington. The vibe is casual, quirky with a hint of hipster.
The opposing wall has been gashed open to expose bricks and hidey holes with bits of pressed metal. I also love the light blue pressed metal adorning the coffee station and the stylish light fillings – filament lights wrapped around a wooden log and suspended underneath plastic milk crates.
The all-day breakfast menu features on-trend ingredients mixed in with cafe standards and includes some naughty and not-so-naughty options.
I go with the grilled haloumi salad with a generous spread of juicy local figs, leaves and herbs and some small broad bean felafels ($18.50). I don’t tend to get that excited by salad but this was superb – I think the combination of salty cheese and sweet pomegranate molasses was the reason.
My friend tried the sweet corn with jalapeno fritters with smashed avocado and tomato salsa, grilled chorizo and eggs ($18.50). She liked the fact that the fritters were chunky and hearty but didn’t seem to excited by her breakfast otherwise. I did notice that the eggs had been perfectly poached, tick.
I follow up my meal with something more naughty – a stack of ricotta hotcakes ($14.90). Three generous rounds of fluffy pancakes, stacked and topped with spiced berries, a ball of lemon and saffron curd that’s almost like ice cream and an artful squirt of burnt maple syrup.
Naughty Boy gives life to a very quiet part of Lygon Street and I liked the food, service and decor. If it’s your local, you’re lucky!