89 Auburn Rd
Hawthorn VIC 3122
03 9813 5560
Mon – Fri: 7am – 4pm
Sat – Sun: 8am – 4pm
Coffee: Seven Seeds
Other drinks: Tea by Storm in a Teacup, Hot Chocolate by Mork
“When I think of sailors, I can’t go passed the photograph taken at the World War 2 street parade in NYC. It’s a symbol of love and optimism in a world that is trying to find its feet after much pain and destruction. To celebrate the defeat of the Japanese Army, one sailor was on the hunt to find a woman (any woman) to lock lips with. The sailor had noticed a nurse watching the parade; he grabbed her and momentarily bent over to kiss her. The contrast between the all white nurse outfit and the sailors dark uniform is striking. Sealed in the memory banks of time, there is one cafe paying tribute to the sailor in Hawthorn – Hello Sailor.
Situated in the leafy suburb of Hawthorn, Hello Sailor offers the brunch crowd soothing and sophisticated decor. Light woods and bright lighting brings a warm and appealing atmosphere; this combined with industrial piping as shelving and a deep grey counter adds an industrial touch. It is clear from the fit-out that this is no typical suburban cafe.
Being a wintry Saturday, it only seemed fitting to order the Baked Eggs with salsiccia, tomato and chili [$16.50] with a long black [$3.50]. The portion of my long black was larger than I had anticipated, but retained a pleasant flavour profile with hints of citrus.
The salsiccia (otherwise known as Italian sausage) were unusually cut into thin long pieces and stewed within the ceramic pot. The sausages were infused with fennel, but it was the sauce that proved to be the highlight of this dish. The house-made sauce burst with authentic flavours – I picked up hints of thyme, vinegar, cloves and all spice – it was immediately refreshing and beautifully balanced with the sausage. Mopping up with the toasted bread was an absolute delight. The eggs were well-baked and overall it felt as though the dish was a solid performer.
Hello Sailor is a worthy addition to Hawthorn. Instead of trying to be something that’s not, it aims to provide a friendly and relaxed cafe. Matching with solid menu items it’s the ideal brunch location that isn’t too loud or overrun by hipsters. Eat, drink and salute to Hello Sailor.”
“As soon as I walked into Hello Sailor on a grey Melbourne morning I was immediately happy with the choice of our latest brunch shenanigans. The venue was perfectly warm and welcoming with the staff cracking jokes as I took a wooden seat next to Mr LB on the counter on the right to the venue. With a beautiful interior design and fitting, Hello Sailor welcomes guests with lightly-coloured wood juxtaposed against white walls and beautifully matched copper fittings.
The cafe was comfortably busy without the hassles of lining up and waiting for a seat. I immediately got onto business and ordered a double espresso [$3.50] whilst considering what I wanted to eat off the main menu; including great winter options such as Vanilla porridge with apple, cinnamon and hazelnuts [$10] and Crepe with marscapone & mixed berry compote [$16.50]. I opted for a healthy option and went for the Winter salad with pear, walnuts, cranberries and blue cheese [$17].
As Mr LB and I chatted about our blogging plans for the upcoming week, my eyes wandered the venue. The more I looked, the more intricacies I discovered. A wall of multiple, semi-organised pictures. Turquoise kitchenware. Fresh muffins out of the oven. So many lovely little things make this venue feel charming and homely, and it was becoming more and more obvious why it felt so welcoming as we continued to chat.
My double espresso was lighter than I was used to and had a hit of berries. It was pleasant to drink and quite aromatic. When our meals came out I was quite excited and devastated at the same time. I immediately had food envy of Mr LB’s dish. My winter salad was bounteous and full of lush green leaves with a perfect portioning of pear, walnuts and cheese.
What was interesting about the blue cheese was that it was not as matured and sharp as I was typically used to, and I found this both surprising and relieving! The blue cheese added a beautiful level of salt to the dish and was the key ingredient that made this dish interesting. There was a light dressing on the leaves that was gently melded the natural flavours of the cranberries throughout the dish, resulting in a gentle sweetness that swept throughout the dish. The pear added crunch to the dish and was perfectly paired with the toasted walnuts.
I really enjoyed Hello Sailor in a way that I find it hard to explain – the food was delicious, the staff were friendly and the acoustics of the venue were nice for catching up with friends. There is something else though that makes Hello Sailor a great place to dine. Perhaps it’s the fact that the staff genuinely look like they enjoy being there? That the locals came in to say hello? Or perhaps it was the welcoming vibe? Either way, Hello Sailor is a lovely cafe and is worth a visit.”
Final thought: “Beautiful baked eggs and Noisette bread available for purchase”