I dragged a few people along to Seven Seeds last Friday lunchtime. Its location surprised me as it was right next to the University of Melbourne where I studied. I remember hanging out in Law Building library and even ICT (which is where Yuye studied) but back in the day, Seven Seeds didn't exist which was a shame. I would have been there everyday for coffee if it was!
Similar to many other coffee places I've been to, Seven Seeds has a industrial/grungy feel to it. The place is made up of half painted red bricks, tall ceilings, artsy decorations and lots of people.
It even had bike racks and a dedicated bicycle area for cyclists. I wouldn't be surprised if this place was made famous by all the coffee loving law and commerce students.
As usual, I ordered a coffee to start. I got my usual latte ($3.50) which was actually very nice. A bit stronger than St Ali, it was fragrant, hot and hit all the right spots. I was so craving for a coffee like that for ages! You can tell when I take a bit long taking photos when the bubbles on the coffee starts getting big. :P Yuye decided to not order coffee this time round (he stole some of mine instead).
I didn't take as long photographing Geoff's flat white, although I didn't taste it. Isn't it the most gorgeous thing? I wish I could make coffees that looked like this.
A bit different to other cafes, Seven seeds keeps their menus on the table in a rustic box along with cutlery. Don't forget to grab your own forks and knives when your meal is served as you won't be getting one from the waitstaff.
I was a bit disappointed with the small selection of dishes available, especially the lack of poached eggs!! I was really looking forward to eating some runny egg yolks but I guess that's my fault for not doing my homework beforehand and research the menus. The only remotely similar thing I could find was the soft boiled eggs with toast soldiers which wasn't a big dish.
As such, I ordered the next best thing I could see - a special of the day written on a strip of paper at the front of the menu - tuna, kipfler poatoes, gribiche, green bean and radicchio salad for $15.
I was worried about the tuna. It could go one of 2 ways - fresh seared tuna or canned tuna but sadly it came as out as the latter. For $15, getting canned tuna wasn't exactly the most value-for-money ingredient. However, I was reasonably happy with the taste. The gribiche sauce was creamy and tasty and was the closest thing to egg on my dish (I actually found a few egg white bits in it). The potatoes were well cooked although nothing special but the overall dish came together nicely.
Yuye and Racheese both ordered the "Southern style BBQ pulled pork, coleslaw, maple syrup dressing & brioche bun" for $14.50. It was an easy choice for Yuye as he adores his pork. I would have picked this dish if he didn't beat me to it.
I thought the pulled pork was a bit on the sweet side but Yuye thought it was ok and Racheese has a huge tolerance for sweetness so this was probably too savoury for her. :P It actually tasted a little Asian to me as it had coriander in it and the pickles weren't really necessary so I ate it separately.
Geoff, Kenneth and Arch all ordered the "breakfast bun, bacon, free-range fried egg, lettuce, semi-dried tomato and hollandaise butter" for $13.50. It was essentially a BLT bun. Apparently it was quite nice but I thought it looked a little uninteresting. I can't comment on the taste either way so lets move on.
We were very lucky to have sat right next to the coffee making room filled with interesting coffee equipment. A barista was making a fancy syphon coffee just as we finished eating and I got to witness the holy rituals of syphon-making in action. I should have taken a video of it actually but photos will have to do.
The same syphons were used as the ones at St Ali which are all made in Japan. First, ground up coffee and water are put in the beaker looking part at the top. The barista stirred the coffee consistently until it was ready.
Then I think she turned a knob somewhere and the coffee started draining into the bottom flask. There's obviously a filter in the middle which stops the coffee bits and foam from going through, leaving just pure filtered coffee at the bottom.
Then the top part is lifted off.
And different to St Ali, the coffee is then poured into a very cute pouring container which is then served to the customer. St Ali serves the syphon as is and we had to pour it ourselves which I found quite fun to do.
I loved Seven's Seeds' coffees. Both Yuye and I thought it was better than St Ali and was among one of the highest ranking coffees we've had. I also enjoyed the meals, although a few minor details (such as lack of poached eggs, the canned tuna and slightly sweet pork) gave it a little less than perfect experience. Maybe next time I'll pass by just to have some coffee!
Phone: (03) 9347 8664
114 Berkeley St, Carlton, VIC 3053
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