Friday night and dinner at The Quarter in Degraves Street Melbourne is our destination. This is a casual cafe space where we have had dinner previously and is the very reason why we decided on another visit, because it was good last time.
On our last visit I ordered the Penne Salmon and it was delicious.
We arrived at about 6:30 pm which might sound a bit senior citizen but considering we had gone straight from work and were both starving there is no time to waste. In the end it was a good decision that we did go a bit earlier as the next couple after us were told there were no tables left and were invited to wait….
I really like The Quarter as it has an energetic (but not over the top) and well functioning selection of staff which makes for good service. The staff buzz about efficiently, so that you almost don’t even notice that you are being “served”. This allows you to just sit and enjoy your company (thank you Alex) and the surroundings, while giving you a confidence that your meal will be in keeping with the service and worth the (short) wait.
With meals ordered (Penne Salmon for me …yes again… and Chicken and Chorizo Risotto for Alex) we sit back and enjoy our window seat view.
Degraves Street is a happening street. It is only a small laneway really which extends two blocks, the second of the two blocks thinner than the first. This means two distinct sections, the one in which The Quarter is in has cafes lining both sides of the street and umbrellas, tables and chairs in the middle of the street. Sorry…sorry…forgot to clarify this “street” is for foot traffic only, not car traffic.
The second section is slightly narrower and is also lined with cafes but on a smaller scale (meaning postage stamp) and there is allowance for a couple of small chairs and a table set against the cafe frontage. Most of these therefore seem to open more for breakfast and lunch diners and a good number of them are closed tonight.
These two combined streets have a cool casual / grunge feel and it is always busy and always buzzing and provides a vast catwalk of dress styles that makes for excellent people watching.
Our meals arrive, they look and smell fantastic, are well hot and of a really decent proportion so nothing left to do but hook in.
There is nothing to fault, my penne is fresh and cooked perfectly, the salmon is a lovely pink and really tender, the sauce is tasty and light and it all tastes and looks really fresh. My meal has a “light vodka cream sauce” … just coincidence why I like this particular dish.
Alex has similar satisfaction with his meal but after sampling my Penne Salmon, concedes that mine is the winner this evening. I love it when I am right….right Alex?
Our meal comes to a reasonable $55 which includes a generous garlic bread and a cold drink but this ultimately is $55 of satisfaction. If we were giving a review score it would get top marks from us and we think well worthy of another visit.
We decide on a change of venue for coffee and head to a spot Alex knows which is Chokolait, the entry to which is off Little Collins Street but also accessible via the Royal Arcade which is a treasure in itself and worth a wander through, stopping to shop.
Again, Chokolait is a cosy place with chocolate (sorry Chokolait) options galore. We stick with simple cappuccinos and find a soft leather sofa for two in the corner. While we didn’t have anything other than our coffee, having time to peruse the menu blackboard, prices were maybe a little on the high side but I guess this isn’t an everyday place, more left for the occasion treat.
Time to head home and see what “interesting” people we might encounter on the train….(hmmm).[showmyads]