727 Glenferrie Road, Hawthorn
03 8658 3520
Cafe, Coffee and Tea
- Salmon Hash
- With Thick Cut Double Smoked Bacon & Thyme Buttered Mushrooms
- Soft Shell Crab Bun
- Cold Drip Coffee
- Matcha Latte
We began the day with their 12 hour cold drip coffee, which was served in a cute mason jar. Brewed in quite an elaborately concoction next to the coffee machine, the cold drip provided forward and bold coffee flavours with muted aftertaste, which apparently, are hints of dark chocolate and cherry. Though my palate isn't refined enough to discover these tones. An exceptionally refreshing and light coffee drink, perfect for cooling down in summer.
The Matcha Latte was also quite enjoyable. With a pleasant taste of green tea permeating throughout, the matcha flavour was ever present though not overpowering. Well balanced with a hint of honey and creamy and frothy milk.
We started off the main fare with the Salmon Hash. Cutting open the crispy, perfectly fried potato hash, the generous mozzarella stuffing within was exceptionally flavourful, stringy and bursting with flavour. The star of the show though was of course the cured salmon. Exceedingly tender and, thanks to the curing process, exhibiting a beautifully rich flavour the generous slices of salmon were well complemented by the runny yolk resulting from the perfectly poached eggs, as well as the earthy and creamy roast beetroot labne. The pickled carrots provided a nice crunch, though leaned towards the dry side and could've benefited from the pickled juices.
We also enjoyed the Soft Shell Crab Burger. Sandwiched between the lightly toasted, airy and buttery brioche was the huge, chunky crab. With a thick and crunchy batter, the golden brown outer enclosed exceptionally soft and tender crab meat. This was well juxtaposed with the shredded papaya salad which provided a juicy and refreshing twist. With a slightly spicy mayonnaise, this was a very well balanced burger, both in terms of flavour and texture, and quickly made it to my top seafood burger of all time.
Opting to add Thick Cut Double Smoked Bacon was admittedly an excellent decision. The bacon itself was fried to a nice crisp, with a slightly charred outer, this provided a great variation in texture. The Double Smoking did wonders to the flavour of the bacon, and, without being overly salty, added an enticing depth. This was undoubtedly one of the best bacon I've sampled in Melbourne, and, having recently tried Heston's roast pork belly, easily beats that too.
We polished off breakfast with the dessert Pavlova, which showcases a beautifully presented panna cotta pierced with shards of pavlova. The consistency and smoothness of the panna cotta was well contrasted by the crunch of the honey puffed wheat and the crispy pavlova pieces. The liberal application of fresh strawberries and blueberries ensured a tangy and fruity flavour throughout, and, with the raspberry sauce, the occasional sourness perfectly juxtaposed the sugary sweetness of the pavlova and panna cotta. An incredibly well balanced dessert, and flawlessly executed.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable brunch experience. The dishes were incredibly well balanced, both in terms of flavour and texture. Combined with near flawless execution and quality ingredients, Le Clec quickly but surely became one of my favourite brunch spots.
Would Penguin Eat Again?
Most definitely. While there's a huge variety of eateries along Glenferrie road, nothing quite compares to the caliber of food dished out by newly opened cafe Le Clec.
I am excitedly anticipating their soon to be revealed dinner service and will definitely be back for more, breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Penguineats would like to thank Le Clec and owner Chang for inviting us to dine at his newest venue.