Mon – Sat: 7am – 4pm
Sun: 8am – 4pm
Coffee: Espresso Syndicate
“The Strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde is an iconic fictional story which still bares relevance today, exploring the curious theme of the good and bad side of people. However, does this theory apply to objects? Can a street, for instance, have a light and a dark side? I can sure name a few – and one that springs to mind is Grey Street, St Kilda. There is definitely a seedy side if you know where to look. There is, however, a good side to it too. One such feature is the word of mouth, up-and-coming cafe, Dr. Jekyll .
Dr. Jekyll is not another grungy-themed cafe in St Kilda. The decor and layout embraces a clean, inviting theme with plenty of natural light flowing through the front of the cafe. Inside, the decor is a mixture of simplistic white walls which are filled with psychedelic paintings. If you dare to stare you will be lost in a trance. There is a nice open kitchen to watch the magic happen and if your keen for some fresh air, the wood – paneled deck is a cool way to chill with gas heating.
Their bean of choice is Syndicate Coffee. I previously noted at North South Eatery that I wasn’t happy with my coffee, however, after tasting Syndicate Coffee at Dr. Jekyll I am considering retracting my statement. My long black had an inviting – almost golden coloured – head. The taste was lovely with a sweet, smooth flavour and a clear berry taste lingering behind. We had both immediately picked up on this, which was surprising as Ms SL’s soy milk usually masks the strength of any fruity tones. I was left with a crisp aftertaste which teased my taste buds.
The Dr. Jekyll menu was impressive with an assorted selection of brunch and unch dishes with an innovative, tasty edge. After a lengthy deliberation over the menu, I went for Scrambled eggs on grilled viennoise house cured ocean trout & chive crème fraiche [$16.5]. The meal was elegantly plated, but on first impression it seemed like a small serving size. What it lacked in size it sure had in flavour! The eggs were perfectly scrambled, teased to highlight to the egg yolk which was juicy and fluffy. The trout and the chive crème fraiche was served with a moderately sweet bread that you would normally find at Bread Top or a similar Asian bakery. The bread really made this dish. The sweetness, combined with the scrambled eggs and trout created a divine match. Neither ingredient discounted the other.
Dr. Jekyll could be described as the cool kid of St Kilda. It provided high quality service and food and were not afraid to use their resources. Even the owners mum was utilised to makes the desserts. We were knocked off our sock with her Lemon Tart [$5.50], which we both rate as one of the best we’ve ever had. Dr. Jekyll is a cool brunch hang out with great food and coffee for all. What really makes them cool is that they aren’t try to be, they just are.”
“We were supposed to be saving money and cooking breakfast at home, but due to a late start to the day and lack of ingredients Mr LB and I decided that we would hop on down to Mart 130 for some delicious corn fritters and a relaxing Sunday brunch. Alas, we arrived and it was packed – full to the brim with a long line of people hanging around outside with coffees, waiting to be seated. They didn’t look like they were going to give up anytime soon, so we decided instead to make our way back to Dr. Jekyll.
For those of you who are not familiar with the tale of Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde, the story revolves around Dr. Jekyll’s obsession that every human is actually made up of two – an angel and a demon. His obsession was so great that he developed a potion to isolate his evil half – Mr Hyde. I’m guessing that the name reflects the ‘good side’ of human nature and all the things we should be enjoying.
We arrived to a rather funky cafe – beautifully quirky space-aged themed tapestry ladened the main seating area of the inside dining room, with chilled cafe music playing in the background and an adorable courtyard (with heaters) out the back. Unfortunately there were no seats outside, so we picked a little spot for two indoors.
A host of staff were walking around, taking orders, topping up water and bantering with customers, without seeming like they were trying too hard to impress. Our coffees arrived and my soy latte was strong. An immediate after taste hit me – sweet and lingering on my palate.
I ordered the Omelette w/field mushrooms, goats fetta, caramelised onions & spinach [$14.5], which arrived with rather simplistic plating. There was nothing fancy in the presentation and it was clear that here they let the flavour do the talking. Meredith’s Goats Cheese is one of my all-time favourite ingredients – fresh, creamy and mouth-melting, it added the perfect level of saltiness to the omelette. The mushrooms were beautifully sautéed before being cooked within the egg. The slices were juicy and perfectly complimented the spinach, which was folded into the centre of the omelette. The sourdough was crunchy and crisp. Frankly, one slice was perfect – any more and it would have been too much.
Despite my fullness, we ordered the home-made Lemon Tart [$5.50]. Believe me – when we say home-made, we mean it. The mother of the owner bakes the cakes here, as does another workers mother. The tomato relish (although we didn’t have anything that included it), is made by a family friend. What a way to run a business!
The tart came out and it didn’t look all too exciting. The first spoonful though – my goodness! – revealed a kind of heaven which I haven’t experienced in a long time. The tart was zingy, fresh, and had real lemons infused in it. I have to say, that this lemon tart trumps my previously unyielding champion Fifteen – Jamie Oliver’s previously renowned Melbourne restaurant (in case you didn’t realise, this wonderful establishment has now been closed and replaced by Tobie Puttock’s The Kitchen Cat). To think that this was made by someones gorgeous mother over her kitchen stove astounds me.
Dr. Jekyll was a surprisingly innovative, exciting and high-quality establishment for cafe-eating. Their seemingly simplistic menu offers food which provides magnificent pop-in-your-mouth flavours that rival some of Melbourne’s better-known cafes. I have to be honest here, a visit back to Dr. Jekyll‘s will not be too far away.”
Final thought: “Best lemon tart”
It’s worth making a mention of the adorable classic bike store next door to Dr Jekyll’s. The classic bike store provides a range of hybrid bikes for men and women, and provides adorably classic accessories such as wicker baskets (for the back and front of the bike) and interchangeable leather seats (red, white, black, green) and handle bar grips.
We were smitten with the classic bike designs and confirmed to each other that this is where we are coming in the near future to purchase our summer bikes.