Barry, the latest cafe to hit Northcote, is as relaxed as the name itself. Tucked into the corner space on High and Barry Streets, it offers floor-to-ceiling windows, bright white walls, hanging light fittings and an array wood and green touches. Designed by Techne Architects and owned by the family behind Pillar of Salt in Richmond, this cafe is dishing up more than just good looks.
A beautiful, long communal bench spans out both ways from the coffee machine — a perfect spot for a lone bruncher. Smaller tables, both inside and out, offer privacy if you desire. Breakfast might come in the form of crunchy peanut butter, heirloom tomatoes, salt and pepper peanuts on toast ($10), or char-grilled bruschetta with crushed avocado, mint, chilli, lime, manchego and seeds ($16) or even the Benedict poached eggs with potato rosti, slow-braised free range ham hock, apple cider hollandaise and granny's apples ($19.50).
The lunch menu covers all bases, with anything from the Californian superfood salad — tri-coloured quinoa, shredded kale, wild organic rice, charred corn, salted ricotta, black turtle beans, heirloom tomatoes and lime and jalapeno vinaigrette ($15) — to the raw zucchini lasagna with cashew, kale and sun-dried tomato pesto ($16). The Barry wagyu beef burger with zucchini pickles, cheddar, tomato, spicy relish and rough-cut potatoes ($17.50) is also set to be a menu favourite.
5 Senses coffee is made on a Synesso machine and served up in endearing pastel green cups — a lovely colour addition to the white space. Pour over, cold drip and Aeropress round out the coffee offering ($3.80-5), while blended juices ($8.50), coconut water ($4.50), a bloody mary with jerky ($9) and a small handful of beers and wines make choosing your poison rather difficult.
A newcomer on the High Street block, Barry already feels at home. Northcote just got a little bit better.