In many countries, the Western custom of comsuming eggs for breakfast is considered, at best, eccentric. That could be the reason that, around Sydney, the morning meal has been undergoing something of a shift. Eggs may still be the breakfast of champions, but now, you’ll find them sous vide instead of poached, perched atop a bowl of nourishing nasi goreng, or scrambled with chorizo and filling the insides of a fluffy corn arepa. And sometimes, just sometimes, you’ll be tempted to forgo them completely. Here are some of the Sydney cafés rethinking brekkie – with delicious results.
SEE ALSO: 7 of the Best Breakfasts in Melbourne
Rising Sun Workshop
This communal motorbike workshop-cum-café/restaurant came about through a crowdfunding campaign and many, many working bees. It’s a place motorbike owners can go to tinker, a place for café racers and café-enthusiasts.
The Rising Sun’s take on the old B&E? Deep-fried egg, pork belly, green chilli greens and rice cake. Don’t go past the Breakfast Ramen, either: buttered toast broth, bacon, egg and tomato. Also worthy of a mention are the Hokkaido Milk Buns, which come filled with either bacon, egg, cheese and “kimslaw” or a vegie version with mushrooms instead of bacon.
1C Whatley St, Newtown
Prison Bento at The Rising Sun. Image supplied.
Café con Leche
Across the road from the venerable Cricketer’s Arms is a tiny Colombian café – listen for the patrons speaking passionately in their native tongue, Spanish. They’re here for arepas (white corn cakes), hot chocolate con queso (with cheese – yes, that’s a thing in Colombia) and quesadillas. At this cosy spot, the most popular menu item isn’t eggs or even empanadas. The morning-after breakfast in Colombia is a big, nourishing bowl of caldo de costilla, a fragrant beef-rib and potato broth filled with coriander, garlic and cumin. It may seem counterintuitive, but if you overdid it last night, this will cure what ails you. After a bowl of caldo and one of Café con Leche’s excellent coffees, you’re ready for round two.
104 Fitzroy Street, Surry Hills
A Colombian brekkie: arepas, guacamole, ropa viejo (pulled beef), salsa, aji (chilli sauce), sour cream. Image supplied.
Boon is a mash-up of traditional Thai classics and Western café foods – think spicy pork and pickled cabbage burgers, pandan croissants and even pasta (albeit served with Thai pork sausage and egg yolk). Here you can find organic sourdough with eggs and bacon, though not quite in the way you expect. Start with a Goldilocks Latte (cold-pressed turmeric, milk and Vallentines honey) or a Thai-style kaffee nohm – coffee with condensed milk – then order the Big Boon Breakfast to get an idea of what this place is all about. You’ll be presented with a delicious spread of congee, pork on skewers, baked eggs, organic bacon, Yum avocado (reminiscent of a Southeast Asian guacamole), mushrooms and sourdough.
425 Pitt Street, Haymarket
Big Boon Breakfast. Image supplied.
A more warming, satisfying breakfast than a traditional Israeli shakshuka cannot be found, and Shenkin’s version doesn’t mess around. Dip your flatbread into the yolk of the eggs to break them, then scoop up some of the spicy, tomatoey sauce. If you’re not feeling the spice, go for Ziva: filo pastry stuffed with olives, mozzarella, cheddar and ricotta and served with a boiled egg, grated tomato, hummus and coriander salsa.
A Shenkin spread. Image by Alana Dimou
Kepos St Kitchen
Redfern’s Kepos Street Kitchen has a menu of recogniseable breakfast classics – only with a rather large twist. Take, for example, the Kepos Benedict: instead of hollandaise, you’ll get smoked salmon, poached eggs and steamed leek topped with green tahini, and the whole delicious mess sits atop Middle Eastern milk bread.
Kepos Benedict. Image supplied.
For something completely different, try the Moroccan Lamb and Pine Nut Cigars: they come with poached eggs, watercress, goats cheese and Vegemite tahini dipping sauce.
96 Kepos Street, Redfern
Breakfast at Devon could be anything from beef cheek and tripe with sweetcorn fregola to French toast with yuzu curd, olive oil ice-cream and matcha soil. Yup, things are never bland at Devon.
Cheeky Beef: raised beef cheek, silverbeet, skordalia, 63-degree egg, kombu and sage crumb, pickled onion, red wine jus. Image supplied.
2 Danks Street, Waterloo
This Vietnamese-influenced café does serve up a good old-fashioned bacon and egg roll (albeit with a homemade apple and date chutney) but we’re more interested in its Viet efforts. These include the Baked Eggs Bo Kho is beef brisket slow-cooked with beans and eggs in a special stew, served with a fresh baguette, and the Deconstructed Banh Mi – pork belly, chutney, pickles, spiced cumquat butter, kimchi, chicken orange pate and baguette.
Poached eggs on honey roasted pumpkin, grain and seed, Bulgarian feta, grilled asparagus, sautéed mushrooms, and wilted spinach with balsamic glaze. Image supplied.
Owing to White Taro's Vietnamese origins, bread is important here, which is why White Taro takes great pride in baking its fluffy, crisp-crusted baguettes in-house.
67 Albion Street, Surry Hills
SEE ALSO: The Best Places for Breakfast in Sydney