Stopping All Stations to Mart

Mart 130

107 Canterbury Road, Middle Park

Mart 130

He says:
I must admit, I fell in love with Mart when I first laid eyes on it. Nestled in an old train station on the converted 96 tram route on the outskirts of Albert Park, Mart is picturesque. It’s the kind of cafe that you’ve always dreamed of opening. Well, if you dream of opening a cafe. The little tables for two out the front, the clickety-clack of arriving trams, the patrons sitting on the brick wall sipping cafe lattes. I’ve been a handful of times, and it’s always just as exciting. Ding ding.

Oh, right, the food. The food is very brunch-centric, with all your classic selections. As I’ve been doing recently, I ordered the eggs on toast with a bunch of extra sides. When my meal arrived, the sides were neatly separated into little bowls. Great to look at, great to photograph, terrible to try and eat out of. I spent the majority of my meal trying to eat food stuck between the tiny bowls. Unlike sleepy old me on a Saturday, I’d recommend tipping them out onto your plate and avoid the embarrassment for you, your fellow dinners, and the side dish.

Inside at Mart

She says:
I’ve been to Mart a lot over the last few years. I really like the actual cafe, the old station building is cool and the patio out the back is one of my favourite places to sit for a couple hours during summer. Just the right mix of shade, breeze, ecclectic furniture and the ability to eat omlettes while watching people jog. The big table at the end is the ultimate prize, managing to get a seat there would literally have made my week. I’m not sure if that says more about the quality of the table or the rest of my week, it’s a good thing either way though.

We ate:
I had the baked cannellini beans with ham hock on sourdough with feta ($15.90) with a side of mushrooms ($3.50). I’ve never had this before and I think it was probably the best brunch I’ve had at Mart, the ham hock was tender and delicious and all round awesome. I”ll definitely be having this again next time I’m there.

Cannelli beans

Gerard had the poached eggs on sourdough ($8.90) with sides of avocado, pesto, feta and bacon ($3.50 each, $4.50 for the bacon). I’d never thought of having pesto as a breakfast side but have to hand it to Mart, it’s a pretty good idea.

Poached eggs

PE had the oven roasted corn fritters with bacon, tomato relish, sour cream and coriander ($17.90). The corn fritters are a Mart signature/classic. They’re normally pretty good, they can be a little on the dry side sometimes though.

Corn fritters

My best friend and her boyfriend-who-gave-her-diamond were sickeningly coupley/boring (and yes, it takes a lot for someone who has a couple food blog to say that) and shared a bowl of bircher muesli with poached fruit and vanilla bean yoghurt ($11.90). It looked fine, but it’s muesli, what can you say about muesli?

Bircher museli

PE’s equally Eurasian but possibly less prominent cousin from New Zealand had the mart eggs #3 – poached eggs with chorizo, rosemary and roasted onion in napoli sauce with hollandaise ($17.90). He was excited enough about it that he couldn’t wait for a photo to start pulling it apart. For good reason too, it looked delicious (but I’m told that leaving the napoli and eggs on the toast for too long can leave everything way too soggy).

Number 3

Wrap it up:
Good solid brunch location in a uniquely Melbourne location. Also good if you’re a gunzeller (Marg: I had no idea what this word meant and had to google it, it worries – but doesn’t surprise me – that Gerard is all over terminology for train enthusiasts).

Price range:
$20 – $25 for some brunch and a drink

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