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Small Victories - Stellar Cafe in North Carlton
Small Victories is a stellar new cafe in leafy historic North Carlton making its mark. Transformed by Arlic Hansen and Ben Farrant, notable Melbourne culinary identities, Small Victories is taking Melbourne by storm. Come here for superb gourmet meals, great coffee and excellent ambience. You know its going to be good when a cafe makes its own produce in house - such as the yoghurt and the smoked bacon. It's a cafe that attracts foodies with its clever nuances and flavour combinations. Small Victories rises above the pack in a highly competitive precinct.
Dining is enjoyable with several (counted 5) dining spaces with cosy timber tables and sleek communal sharing tables, stools by the counter or along the window, upstairs dining area with mini skylight/atrium or you can sit outside and enjoy the ambience of Rathdowne Street.
Coffee here is top notch with the star inclusion of Dane Johns barista extraordinaire ex Wide Open Road. Small Victories uses Wide Open Road blends and the coffee is seriously good. The lattes have nutty and buttery characteristics and are of a decent strength.
Decor is modern and cool with large naked bulb lighting (revealing a groovy filament), grey couch backing along the upstairs wall with mirror above, a marble bar and great use of timbers. Not too much on the walls giving a sense of modern chic and not old world clutter.
Funky music adds to the vibe played on a turntable with vinyl selections.
There is a menu brimming with imagination and flair. The breakfasts are wonderful. The Small Victories mixed grill is sensational with Eggs, bacon, beans, blood pudding, croquette, and two pork sausages.
This is no clumsy fry up or predictable big breakfast. The leek and cheddar croquette was superb and creamy inside and I could have eaten about six. The eggs were perfectly cooked and runny. The sreaky bacon was high quality, smoked and prepared in house. The blood pudding was delicious and served fresh and had some moisture - unlike other black puddings elsewhere which have been dry and caked. And the sausages were gourmet, tasty and not too fatty. The beans were also impressive with gremolata on top. The accompanying toast was also excellent.
I was also tempted to go with the Corn (creamed) and streaky bacon breakfast with lardo soldier and thyme salt, which looked like something different and imaginative. The toast soldier with melted lardo is awesome.
These meals come in terracotta dishes. At the time they'd run out of big plates, so my mixed grill came in two seperate plates - no problem.
The small bowl of pink salt placed on the table with the meal was a nice gourmet touch.
Or you may want to try the Granola with elderflower, poached rhubarb, lychee, organic yoghurt and berry powder.
Small Victories also excels with its lunch selections including gourmet soup, pastas and sandwiches.
Small Victories is a super impressive and chic foodie haven that excites.