Leave the basket, blanket and sunscreen behind - all that's needed at Bondi Picnic is a large appetite.
The menu at this excellent new cafe is fun and original. The chocolate milkshake is spiked with a genius scoop of peppermint ice-cream, the extremely french toast is made with sliced croissants and the delicious ''banana smoothie unlike all others'' lives up to its title (secret ingredient: toasted granola).
Another Bondi Picnic innovation is the cold-drip coffee served with a chaser of fresh coconut water ($3.50). It's a duet in contrasts: the bold brew followed by the beautifully sweet juice. Each day, a different single-origin coffee is used for the cold drip, perhaps from El Salvador, Ethiopia, Peru or Guatemala - it's a spin of the globe, courtesy of The Little Marionette. Ed Cutcliffe, who runs that roaster and its related cafes, is one of Bondi Picnic's owners. Understandably, coffee is a big deal here. A piccolo, made from Guatemalan Pena Roja, is so beautifully smoky my unfortunate companion has to endure my endless exclamations about how good it is.
Bondi Picnic's other owners are DJs Will Cate and Anthony Maniscalco, and Andrew Crabbe of Bondi Icebergs' Crabbe Hole eatery. Just blocks from the beach, their cafe has a laid-back mood and satisfying food. The french toast layers croissant slices with fruit and a judicious dose of yoghurt to keep the sweetness in check. My friend enjoys her ''Vege-cado'' toast ($8.50), a breakfast building kit of sourdough, Vegemite, avocado and lemon, which she extends with sides of pancetta and mushrooms. The chilli, coconut and pumpkin soup with half-sandwich isn't a bad bet, either.
Since our visit, the decor has changed and a new chef, Antoni Vourlos, has been installed. We liked Bondi Picnic already; hopefully these alterations will only build on great foundations.
Address 101 Hall Street, Bondi, 8096 6561
Open Daily, 7am-4pm
- 8096 6561
- Opening Hours - Daily: 7am-4pm
- Author - Lee Tran Lam