26 Feb Taste the Nutella Panacotta at Penta in Elsternwick
Penta goes against the definition of insanity. That is, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. The ‘Mischievous Little Dreamers’ – the same team behind Tinker, Mob Espresso and Temperance Society have unearthed the formula to lure the finicky Melbourne cafe crowd. There’s plenty of fish in the sea and many of us are hooked. You may have noticed similarities between all three sister cafes. The same successful formula is replicated with slight tweaks: bubblegum bright smoothies, colourful Pannacottas and hotcakes laced with gardens of edible flowers. One look at those smoothies and you know the ‘Dreamers’ have been here. But how does Penta compare to its’ sisters?
The south east is booming with new openings. Dinner wise, there’s Bang Bang, Chulo and Ms Elwood. Penta plants its flag firmly, as the go-to cafe, with options for the healthy eaters and the treat yo-self crowd. Looking at our choices below, the latter is our calling. The Penta Benedict has sweet potato waffles, a pillowy foundation, for the happenings above. A pop of the poached egg, merges the golden yolk, with a zing of jalapeno hollandaise and pull-apart braised beef cheek. It’s delicious man food. The Chilli scrambled eggs, is best friends with a snow storm of parmesan and the crunch of fried shallots. The umami flavours, further enhanced with shavings of bacon and pops of freshness, from Vietnamese mint. One of the more memorable scrambled eggs, I’ve tasted in a while.
Every restaurant searches for the instaworthy Beyonce dish. A fierce signature that looks and tastes exquisite. The Nutella pannacotta is the Beyonce of brunch dishes. Plating wise, you would be mistaken, if this was a dessert at a hatted restaurant. Such is the quality of brunch in Melbourne, we have become accustomed to intricate, beautiful plates of breakfast food. At first glance, the texture looks a tad firm, but a spoonful of the dessert, had our mouths hanging. Torched marshmallows, bananas encrusted with nuts, edible flowers, honey joy crumb.. it all keeps the diner interested, as you fork through the array of ‘pretty’ accompaniments. It’s a beautiful plate of food, matched by taste. Out of all the sisters, Penta reigns supreme, ticking boxes for taste and aesthetics.
Chilli Scrambled Eggs w/ Bacon, Cherry Tomatoes, Fried Shallots, Parmesan, Vietnamese mint
28 Riddell Parade