Kodama are spirits in Japanese folklore that inhabit trees. It seems that Kodama Coffee in Williamstown is taking some Japanese inspiration for their menu and in their minimalist decor with pops of bright flora.
The small kitchen serves a tightly edited all day breakfast/lunch menu featuring Japanese ingredients such as yuzu, matcha and edamame – while still serving eggs and toast for the traditionalists.
The whitewashed cafe is split into two rooms with two separate entrances. Both rooms are cosy but the communal table is definitely the place to hang out if you’ve got kids. One wall has a chalkboard for scribbling on and the low stools provide enough room for a pram or high chair.
I try the quinoa, kale, pickled beets, roasted hazelnuts and egg ($17). The egg is perfectly poached with a bright orange lava of yolk, the quinoa is fluffy and not gritty and the roasted pumpkin and miso puree makes me want to lick the bowl clean.
The fluffy matcha waffle is topped with a contrasting palette of red strawberries and black sesame ice cream. The red bean inside the mousse is barely discernible, which is ok with me as I’m not actually a fan of red bean ($15). The melting ice cream means that the waffle doesn’t really need the chocolate caramel sauce (but who’s going to say no to it!).
Curiously the kids waffle with chocolate sauce, fresh strawberries and house made marshmallow is actually the same size for less money ($9.50). Granted the ingredients in the ‘adults’ version of the waffle are more exotic, but if a waffle is really all you’re after then I recommend getting the kids meal!
Don’t be deceived by the muesli-bowl like appearance of the chia pudding ($14). In fact the jelly-like pudding is on the bottom of the liberal layer of house made granola along with a fan of fresh fruit and dabs of vanilla labne. There’s no real need for the small pot of milk that comes with it.
Kodama Coffee is a great addition to Williamstown, and area which until now has been short of really good cafes despite boasting amazing water views and an affluent latte-sipping population. Welcome to the neighbourhood!