Monday, April 1, 2013

Satchmo's Den, Melbourne CBD by Big Fil

Satchmo’s Den is a cute new quality cafe dispensing lunch to the hungry office workers of upper Lonsdale Street. It’s located in the same slightly hard to find spot Piadina Slowfood used to be - a nice cafe that never seemed to gain the popularity it deserved - so unless you specifically know it’s there you may not come across it except by accident.

As well as a very charismatic and appealing interior on good weather days there is always the option of laneway al fresco dining. On the day that Snooze, Ms No Meat and I visited though we were definitely focused on inside dining (it was a bit windy) and not leaving the office until after 12.15 meant we were in trouble. Fortunately some fellow friendly Melbournian diners were willing to move along the table a bit giving us room to sit.

You can choose from the baked goodies behind the glass counter but wanting something hot we all headed for the wall mounted menu. All of us found a few things which appealed without anything demanding that we order it. Unsurprisingly Ms No Meat chose a dish which had no meat in it. Her potato and leek soup looked good, and the bread served with it was excellent, but unfortunately the soup itself was a little tasteless.

Snooze surprised me a little by ordering the lamb pasty, something usually more up my alley. I think this was partly reflected in our reaction to the dish. Snooze was a little ‘meh’ about it, thinking it could have used some more vegetables in the filling. Me though, I thought it was great. Nice slightly flaky pastry, very tender lamb and lots of it. Just goes to show that everyone’s taste is slightly different.

Where that was clearest though was with my dish, the enchilada with beans wrapped in a soft tortilla, topped with cheese and served with guacamole. I thought this was a reasonably tasty enchilada without knocking my socks off, with a bit of a chilli hit but nothing too explosive. Both my dining companions indicated they were glad they hadn’t ordered it, that it was way too hot for them. Snooze and Ms No Meat, I award you membership of the chilli wuss club.J

While I felt the food here was solid without being anything too special, I still enjoyed our visit here a lot. Why you ask? The friendly staff certainly helped but it is more that it is just such a cosy and comfortable spot it’s hard to imagine anyone not liking it. Not loving it maybe, as there is still an element of subjectivity and it does get a little crowded, but Satchmo’s Den has personality which distinguishes it from the oh so typical industrial minimalist look of so many Melbourne cafes.

Food – 7
Service – 7.5
Ambience – 8
Price – 7

Rear 57 Lonsdale Street
Melbourne Vic 3000
Tel: (03) 9663 8003

Satchmo's Den on Urbanspoon

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