Every Monday morning for the last couple of weeks, I’ve received a barrage of “Have you been to Chez Dre yet?” comments. And every time I said that I’d love to go, but South Melbourne is a little hard for us to get to, and we’d try it out next time we were in the area not stuffing our faces with dim sims. So this week, I didn’t have to hang my head in culinary shame, as the planets aligned with Marg arranging brunch there with a friend.
After cantankerously cursing the general lack of carparking around South Melbourne, and being very surprised at the punctuality of Marg’s friends, we headed into the laneway containing Chez Dre. Due to the prime Sunday timeslot, I was expecting a bit of a wait, but after grabbing a waiter, and being given a bench outside to sit at, we were at a table for four within no more than 5 minutes, pouring over the menu. Having unfortunately spotted the case full of croissants on entry, a lot of the menu discussion centered around whether we should go for a croissant centric dish, or whether it was too gluttonous to order another item and then “share” a croissant. Ultimately common sense prevailed, and by common sense I mean I really just wanted the rhubarb Danish (in addition to breakfast). Every breakfast needs a dessert.
Marg’s been swamped with work this week, so I’ll have to paraphrase her thoughts on Chez Dre: “nom nom nom nom. Croissant. Nom nom nom.” She bills in 6 minute blocks, so that conversation cost me $50.
Marg had the omelette du jour with herb polenta, with a side of bacon. There was a little bit of an issue where the menu said that the sourdough side, which is the default, could be replaced with polenta, but the waitress wasn’t too sure. Luckily though when the omelette appeared it was flanked company by polenta. The omelette was delicious, as was the forbidden polenta.
I went a little out there and got the tomato & basil bruschetta with a poached egg and a side of spicy lamb sausage and bacon. I’m not a massive fan of poached eggs, so to me I felt it didn’t really add anything to the dish; I would have just preferred a larger amount of tomatoes. If you slap an egg on it, then it’s definitely a breakfast dish, right? I am just knit picking, as everything was top notch, with the spicy lamb sausage being a particular standout.
Marg’s BFF had the healthy option, a toasted croissant with smoked ham, gruyere cheese and tomato. Just look at it, it looks amazing (and not remotely healthy):
Collin Hill, the last member of our little quartet, and also the last person to receive their meal by a solid 10 minutes (the wait staff did apologise profusely), ordered the Grand petit dejeuner. Again, nothing to fault here, with a generous serving of everything.
After being paraded past the display cabinet, I couldn’t resist ordering dessert. I feel Chez Dre just encourages you to have breakfast dessert. Don’t judge me. Obviously the standard croissant was going to be my first choice, but I couldn’t go past the look of the rhubarb and custard Danish. And it tasted even better.
More croissants than Paris and a solid brunch menu to wash them down with. Chez Dre is up there with the best of the Melbourne brunch scene. Ooh La La.