Norman South Yarra
A two-storey brunch destination with savoury waffles for breakfast and a cocktail cart for those balmy afternoons.
Sophisticated two-storey cafe Norman has made its home in the heart of South Yarra, decked out in a vision of marble, brushed brass and warm timber joinery. With its breezy blue tones and abundance of greenery, the Toorak Road venue is something of an oasis, with space for 100 diners inside and more within the sunny, white-fenced openair seating area on Cunningham Street.
With owners Andrew Simmonds (The Wolf Windsor) and Paul Lange at the helm, and Matt Boylan (Fourth Chapter) heading up the kitchen, it's promising a mix of creative fare and modern cafe classics to tempt all palates.
The all-day breakfast menu might see you feasting on familiar favourites like an acai bowl ($17), the chilli scramble on brioche ($18), and french toast teamed with caramelised banana and a cherry glaze ($22). Or, shake things up with the likes of zucchini and corn waffles ($21), and coyo-topped crumpets finished with hibiscus-poached pear ($16). Lunchtime offers up another mixed bag of treats, starring plates like the char siu bao ($22), popcorn cauliflower tacos served with kimchi mayo ($19), and a loaded vegan buddha bowl ($18).
To match, there's coffee by Coburg North roasters Inglewood, and a lineup of smoothies and shakes (all $9) that runs from the virtuous (a green smoothie) to the decadent (we're talking a creamy chocolate thickshake). Otherwise, embrace the summer vibes and hit the bar cart by the front door for something boozy — it's slinging spritzes, seasonal cocktails and ice-cold Peroni cans to suit those balmy afternoons.
Images: Simon Shiff