Australia Calling: Bondi breakfast

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17 June 2009
Bondi Beach, Photography by Keith Mason.

Before hitting the beach, check out these brilliant Bondi breakfast joints.

Some say Bondi Beach is at its best in the cooler months, when the bare-backed tourists barely blip on the radar and the locals are out in force. If you want to blend in with the natives then best you café hop like one: give Campbell Parade a miss and head for Hall, Curlewis, or Glenayre Streets. Here are a few of my top picks:

Jed’s Food Store
60 Warners Avenue (corner of Glenayre and Warner’s Ave).
+61 2 9365 0022.

The strewn newspapers add to its charm, as does the smattering of communal tables, blaring beats and sensational Toby’s Estate coffee. On the weekends the milling of wannabe diners spills off the footpath, so best you cut short the sleep-in. Menu highlights include: buttermilk pancakes, eggs benny, and for some winter warmth, porridge with caramelised banana. Prices hover between $10-$15 for the larger plates.

Brown Sugar

106 Curlewis Street.
+61 2 9130 1566.

Much like Jed’s, you’re going to want to get to Brown Sugar early to get a breakfast table, and if you want a night time dine you will have to book a week or more in advance. Specialising in modern Australian cuisine, the standouts on the breakfast menu include the asparagus and Parmesan eggs with truffle oil ($16) and for the sweet-toothed, the banana bread with caramelised banana, strawberries and yoghurt ($8) is a must.

 Le Paris-Go
38 Hall Street.
For a seat with an impressive vantage point (of the fashion and social-setters, not the beach) head to Paris-Go. The food is reasonably priced, there’s an all-day breakfast menu and a slew of vegetarian options. Like many of the local haunts, prepare to wait for a pew – but voila, once in the door, the nonchalant wait staff aren’t going to hassle for the table back.

 Gertrude and Alice
46 Hall Street, Bondi Beach.
+61 2 9130 5155.

Gertrude and Alice is a fine choice for an anytime-of-day coffee with the Campos bean blend sure to satisfy. This place is packed with pre-loved books and comfy chairs, and is the perfect retreat for the solo diner or those wanting a discreet chinwag without being seen by the local social brigade. The lunch menu is limited but tasty and there’s a petit choice of homemade bakes chalked on the noticeboard

Gusto Bondi

16 Hall Street, Bondi Beach.
+61 2 9130 4565.

For a coffee or lunch to go refuel at Gusto – just next door to afternoon and night time favourite, Ravesies. Footpath seating accommodates for about six, yet the throngs of locals happily mull and sip on lattes while waiting for a familiar face to roll by.

Angela O'Connor

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