Middle Brighton Baths Café

This café visit was definitely earned – almost 50km of riding done down iconic Beach Road to Mordialloc and most of the way back – definitely earned.  I should remind readers that Dining Nirvana started as a blog on fabulous food – hopefully with a bit of cycling thrown in.  Alas, I’ve certainly been doing more of the former than the latter – but an impending bike trip around Burgundy and the Loire in France has thrown me back on my trusty steed in an effort to get a bit fitter.  The aim:  Enjoy the cycling, not endure it.

Alas – today was an exercise in endurance.  The trip down was fantastic – with 24km/h tailwinds we whipped down there like Cadel Evans!  Well…. almost…   work with me people.

A well earned coffee at Le Tour Café in Mordialloc marked our turnaround spot – and that’s where the pain commenced.  The wind had picked up – it was now 32km/h – in our face!!!!   All good training right? People?  Are you with me??

18 kilometres of pure hell later… we finally pulled into Middle Brighton Baths, unfurled ourselves from our bikes, and staggered into the café.  We opted to sit inside, because as you can imagine, there was a bit of a wind chill factor going on outside.  It was pretty busy – but we were promised we could probably get a table in 10 minutes. 

And this is where things get a little unstuck.  This was Sunday morning – the prime brunch time slot – and the staff just weren’t coping with demand.  Clearly, a number of the floor staff were new and/or inexperienced.   A recruitment notice for floor staff  stuck to the wall confirmed our suspicions.  A number of tables became available at once, and since we knew we were at the top of the list, we started to make a move – but we were stopped in our place by the head wait person who said: Just give me two minutes and I’ll set it up.  Do you know what set up consisted of?   Putting two menus on the table… stopping us in our tracks while she served another 3 sets of people leaving and paying seemed a little overkill.  But anyway… five minutes later we finally were able to sit at our table.

Toasted Sourdough – crushed avocado, ricotta and chilli, roma tomatoes

The coffee wasn’t as good as at Le Tour – but it was OK.  For brunch, I ordered the toasted sourdough – because I love avocado.  This isn’t a bad combo – but the promised chilli is a bit invisible to both the eye and the palate.  However, I do love the mix of the ricotta and avo – all helped along by a nicely roasted roma tomato.

Two poached eggs on toast with bacon

Andrew had his signature poached eggs with bacon on toast.  He was not really impressed, as one egg was underdone and the other one was extremely overdone.  FAIL!  The bacon was OK – but it’s hard to stuff up bacon… right?

Overall – Middle Brighton Baths is a middling to average breakfast out.  However, because it enjoys a prime location on the beach, they have a captive audience of continual patrons.  So, even if the staff can’t keep up with demand, they’re never going to lose out.  It does enjoy a fabulous view – so just make sure you eat with your eyes as well – and you should be satisfied.   

For cyclists:

Beach Road is an iconic bike ride along Melbourne’s south eastern foreshore.  CBD to Mordialloc is 60km return – it’s relatively flat – with a few “undulations” thrown in there for fun.  If there’s a wind blowing, it’s generally a tailwind going down – and then a headwind on the return trip.

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