Tue – Fri: 4pm – 1am
Sat – Sun: 9am – 1am
Coffee: All Press
“The status of Melbourne being one of the most livable cities in the world has never sat well with me. It’s not as though I have decided to barrack for Sydney. Rather, the status implies that the city of Melbourne is complete – no room for improvement. This sort of celebration and confidence boasting can bring about stagnation. Luckily, one of Melbourne’s best qualities is improvement. If something is seen as dated and undesirable, another sees potential and new life. From warehouse apartments to restaurants operating in unique locations, Melbourne knows how to transform a dead horse into a winner. One such transformation is where Morris Jones resides.
Once an auto shop and before that a trading house it is now a stunning bar, restaurant, and most recently a weekend brunch spot. From the outside, there is a same-same Chapel Street vibe. Inside, however, the space oozes sophistication with leather brown couches and dark furniture pieces that match perfectly with the exposed wooden beams. Nothing has been left to chance with this two storey building. One side has been sectioned off for casual drinking and the other side for dining with a window looking into the kitchen to see the magic unfold. Upstairs there are two separate private dining areas for those special moments. These spaces also cater for Morris Jones Food Society events. The most recent event was Chef vs Mixologist where head chef Matthew Butcher matched two dishes with Barcardi Brand Ambassador Chanel Liquor cocktails and then vice versa.
Coffee here is by AllPress Espresso and the menu covers all bases from French Toast, Maple, Banana Ice Cream [$14] to Croque Madame, Duck Egg [$15.50].
We were invited to Morris Jones who were showcasing their new brunch offerings. Our first course was designed to be palate cleanser – Champagne breakfast containing dried fruit and stolen lemons – but in many ways had charm and theatre. It had woken us all up with the drama of the liquid nitrogen expelled over the plate as the champagne was poured in. The dried fruit crackled (as if we were eating children’s cereal) and with a slightly sweet taste smoothly cut through the champagne to ready our palates for the main.
The Zucchini slice, poached eggs, smashed feta and avocado [$15.50] was my choice and it didn’t disappoint. The zucchini slice was moist and slightly cheesy, with the perfect base for the poached eggs. The asparagus spears not only looked stunning but were tasty and soft, slightly glazed in oil to complement the zucchini slice and avocado smash. This dish won’t win any prices for being outside the box, however the ingredients speak for themselves and was a cracker nonetheless.
Morris Jones has struck the right balance in providing quality brunch meals with a stunning decor without feeling like you are about to drop a bomb at the cash till. It’s refreshing to see an established diner and bar successfully deliver a fantastic brunch experience. As with any late brunch, beers to follow goes down just so well.”
“I’m going to be honest. After almost four years of blogging and eating food from some of Melbourne’s finest cafes, I’m pretty damn hard to impress. Yes, I often enjoy the places I eat at, but the wow factor is hard to come by.
Mr LB and I were invited by the good people at Zilla & Brook to try Morris Jones, a venue which has recently hired renowned chef Matthew Butcher who touts being Shannon Bennet’s first ever apprentice, working at Maze and appearing on Gordon Ramsay’s widely successful (and hilarious/horrifying) shows Hell’s Kitchen and Kitchen Nightmares. Butcher has been with the team for five months and the venue has now opened its doors to weekend brunch goers.
Morris Jones has been around for approximately two years and has an incredible fit out, done by the firm Russel & George. Part owner Hayden Burbank talked fondly of a stained glass window they found boarded up for over 100 years during the revamp in the the upstairs private dining area – the building itself was built in 1887 and has had a few lives since. The vibe of the venue is chic but relaxed with distressed white-washed brick walls contrasted by bold striped chairs, classic wooden chairs and a beautifully lit bar that acts a visual feature.
I started my early morning with a double espresso by Allpress which was full-bodied. Our palate cleanser of liquid nitrogen, freeze dried fruit, champagne & stolen lemons was an incredibly theatrical. A fine-dining way to start the day. The champagne-lemonade combination was sweet and fizzy, beautifully matched and balanced. Once it poured over the freeze dried fruit, a pillow of air fizzed over to create the drama. The overall flavour could be likened to fruit loops!
For mains, I opted for the Poached free range eggs with avocado, hash fritters and corn & chilli relish [$15.50]. I was delighted with what came out – the corn and chilli relish was mixed in with some parsley and the combinations was really delicious. It had a bit of kick to it which was nice. The hash brown was deliciously done MacDonald’s style – and what was impressive was that the batter held its crispiness even underneath the corn and chilli relish! The eggs were beautifully done and the overall combination was tasty.
Overall I really enjoyed Morris Jones, and I even returned a couple of weeks later to attend the Chef Vs Mixologist event with my partner G. The staff are really friendly and I love the feeling of space that the venue provides. I will definitely be coming back here again to work my way down their breakfast menu.”
Final Thought: “Exquisite architecture to match the food”