Pepper, Flemington

My priority on Saturday was to attend the Royal Melbourne Wine Show at the Melbourne Showgrounds, which meant that I needed a BIG breakfast to help me “taste” over 3,000 wine entries!

I’m not geographically familiar with the West side of Melbourne, so I relied on Google maps to help me locate the nearest train station to the showgrounds. Leaving Newmarket station and heading under the underpass, I saw a cafe in a beautiful old building with an old sign above the door, advertising the “Girdwood Hygienic Library” and full of people and so I knew I had found my breakfast spot.

Zucchini fritters with feta, bacon, roast tomato, rocket, aioli, poached egg and mango chutney
Zucchini fritters with feta, bacon, roast tomato, rocket, aioli, poached egg and mango chutney – Pepper, Flemington

When I walked inside it was quite busy and I couldn’t see a spare table and then I saw that there was additional seating towards the back of the building but still very busy. I was about to leave when someone behind the counter quickly called out to me and found me a table towards the back. There was French toast on the menu but the description didn’t appeal and after several re-reads I landed on the zucchini fritters with the works – poached egg, roast tomato, bacon, rocket, aioli and … mango chutney!

I think I chose wisely from the menu and I did enjoy all of the different components of the dish. However as the zucchini fritters were gluten free, there didn’t seem to be a binding agent which meant that they fell off the fork and needed to be strategically manoevered towards my mouth without ruining my clothes. At one point I thought that there was too much rocket but with the aioli and the mango chutney merging together, it was sufficient to soak up the deliciously sweet sauce.

It tasted great but I couldn’t help think I needed a slice of toast as well but that just might be me thinking I needed to load up on carbs to survive the impending wine tasting extravaganza that I was heading off to. The service was great and I even received very helpful directions to the Showgrounds and so Pepper was a great start to a wonderful day.

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