Opening Hours:
Mon – Fri: 7am – 5pm
Sat: 8am – 3pm

Address: 8 Exploration Lane, Melbourne

Coffee: Padre Coffee

Mr LB:
6:30am: Up and at ’em Melbournians! Today is a work day. Not just any working day, but the day you need to bring your A-game.

7:30am: Shower, dress, assemble the key essentials and embark on the journey to the CBD.

7:44am: Race to the train/tram/bus.

7:45am: Crowded public transport … the worse!

8:05am: Breakfast and coffee – a decent one at that – is required to energise the mind and sustain the body for the day ahead. You make up your mind and go to The League of Honest Coffee.

8:07am: Arrive at The League of Honest Coffee.

The League of Honest Coffee lends itself to be a leader in providing great coffee around its Exhibition and Little Lonsdale street location. Instead of occupying a poky location with limited seating, The League of Honest Coffee allows patrons to experience coffee the way it has been done for decades – sitting down. The décor is clean and not confronting. The mild green feature wall act as the back drop that allows for a warm ambiance with plenty of natural light. The floor space is surrounded by various and obvious coffee cues; a serious barista set up, coffee merchandise for the home and travel and a large sculpture of a portafilter hanging over the communal table.

On previous occasions I had been served by wait staff to order my coffee, however given the early start and the masses of people ordering morning take-away coffees – Miss SL and myself joined the cue to order our morning breakfast. Breakfast options are limited to say the least, as I ordered a single origin long black [$4], Avo and feta on toast [$8] (the only other breakfast option was a toasted ham and cheese croissant!) and a pear Danish tart [$4.50] (feature picture).

8:17am: Coffee arrives. My single origin long black was well-balanced in flavour and consistency. It was bright  with fruity flavours but smoothened out on the back of the palate – making for an enjoyable morning coffee.

8:22am: Smashed Avocado arrives at the table. While being a little annoyed with the limited choice for breakfast, it was soon forgotten by the quality, portion and additional flavour added to the dish. The smashed avocado was exceedingly tasty with a lovely consistency of avocado, lemon, oil and dill. The dill was a nice touch and allowed for the dish to be more aromatic and distinguishable on the palate.

Above: Avo and feta on toast

The portion size was quite generous with a thick layer of avocado spread across both large pieces of bread – satisfying my morning hunger. The League of Honest Coffee may not have the diversity required to cater for all breakfast needs, but it can offer great coffee. It’s a strong coffee mecca for its location that also provides a bite to eat before embarking on the day ahead.

8:35am: Exit The League of Honest Coffee with a happy belly and mind that is activated and poised to commence the work day.”

Miss SL:
The League of Honest Coffee is by no means new to the Melbourne brunch scene, opening its doors to the public in 2011 with a whirlwind of positive reviews and backed by previous ventures: The Brunswick East Project (no photos allowed – looking at all our blogger friends!) and Padre Coffee in South Melbourne Markets. Mr LB and I have been saying for years ‘we must get around to formally reviewing them!’. Well, the time had finally arrived. If you have never been, the venue is tucked away and is a few doors down from the infamous Trunk .

It looks a little inconspicuous compared to the treasures that lie just beyond the door. Glancing in from the street, you might only catch sight of the coffee machine and pastries that lie just beyond the door. Upon entry, however, you realise that the venue hones in to some cosy seating towards the back of the venue, including a communal table for larger groups tucked away around the corner from the main service counter.

We were a little unsure upon entry as to whether The League of Honest Coffee did proper breakfast, as there was no clear menu and no real kitchen in sight. It caught our eye, however, on one of the walls there were breakfast-like options scribbled in chalk, and we inquired with the staff. You’d be hard-pressed to find anything with eggs here, given the lack of cooking facilities. With that in mind, I opted for an oldie but a goodie – Avo and feta on toast [$8] with a Cinnamon Scroll [$~4] and Padre soy latte [$4.50].

We had to order at the counter; I’m not sure if this is general practice when dining in here or if it was just because the wait staff were double-hatting with front-counter service and barista duties. The table we had selected was a two-seater, located right at the back of the venue. It felt a little crammed but was generally okay for dining and had an interesting view of the array of coffee-related products on sale. My cinnamon scroll was served immediately with my order and was too hard to resist, so I started my meal backwards with dessert first.

Above: Cinnamon scroll

It was sweet – really sweet – compared to cinnamon scrolls I was used to. The scroll was crunchy, had an intense cinnamon flavour that was glazed with some kind of gelatin on the top layer of the scroll. In the end, I couldn’t finish it despite loving these sorts of scrolls.

Avo and feta on toast

My main serve was generous – two slices of toast, heavily topped with smashed avocado that was mixed with dill and lemon. It was delicious. What made this dish unusual was the use of the dill. It added an unusual twist to the meal, which I found complimentary to the avocado. The sourdough was beautiful, crisp and crunchy. The portion size was very generous and I was stuffed by the end of the meal!

The League of Honest Coffee is a nice place to pop-in if you’re in the area. It’s fast, provides good coffee and has great little take-away pastries. The food does not have a massive ‘wow factor’, but it is fresh, easy and suitable for those running into the office.”  

Final thought: “Great pit-stop if you’re in the area”

The League of Honest Coffee on Urbanspoon

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