Friday, January 3, 2014

Rowena Parade Corner Store, Richmond by Big Fil

As a child of the 70's I still remember the old corner stores and milk bars.  They were being phased out even then but you still found a few in older established suburbs.  They were places that sold a small range of goods, things which you could get cheaper from the supermarket but more conveniently at the store and during the hours that supermarkets weren't allowed to open.

They also were great places to get cold drinks, ice creams and milk shakes on hot days.  Rowena Parade Corner Store brings some of that old school vibe with modern Melbourne food and attitude.

When you enter the range of goods along the wall is very impressive, similar to Grigon's and Orr but larger.  Much of the furniture has a real 50s and 60s feel to it, with one wall dominated by a large picture of what I think is Santorini.  The music is mellow and the milk crates strategically placed near the front window give the cafe a casual, inner city Melbourne sort of vibe.

When the time comes to order the breakfast menu isn't as wide and varied as it could be, with both Snooze and myself going for egg based dishes, something I only occasionally order.  My choice was the Green Eggs and Ham, Virginia ham off the bone, pesto and baby spinach, baked in a pan.  I am not always the biggest fan of pesto and egg dishes, finding that the stronger flavour of the pesto can overwhelm that of the eggs.  That was true here to a minor extent, but what I did like about the dish was how much more balanced the flavours were when eaten with the bread.  Good bread too, courtesy of the Convent Bakery.

I preferred Snooze's choice of the Plaki Saganaki, lima beans and vegetables in a tomato reduction, served with a poached egg and the same good bread.  I found the tomato reduction worked better than the pesto and spinach, and was delicious when soaked up into the bread.

A nice little cafe with lots of character and good but not outstanding food.  I am not sure that it's somewhere I'd travel to repeatedly to try but I do like the idea of preserving the local milk bars and corner shops and turning them into cafes, and Rowena Parade is the best of these I've tried.

Food - 7
Ambience - 8
Service - 7
Price - 7

44 Rowena Parade
Richmond VIC 3121
Tel: (03) 9421 3262

Rowena Parade Corner Store on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Bureaucrat said...

Wow.... I can't remember a time when I visited a milk bar that had stuff that was cheaper than in the shops!

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