Running ahead of time, I decide to take the scenic route to Altona’s Harrington Square, but as I pass Bezirk cafe on Millers Road, I feel a twinge of guilt.

I’d exchanged emails a while back with one of Bezirk’s proprietors with a view to doing a CTS review – but we simply haven’t got around to it yet.

Birdcage Cafe Altona

  • Address: 7 Harrington Square, Altona
  • Phone: 0414 224 821

 

Now here I am, heading to another Altona cafe to do the biz on the eve of its big opening!

Oh well … happily, after I enter Birdcage Cafe Altona, I discover the couple behind it, Adrian and Cath Davey, are the very same folks who run Bezirk – problem solved … or rather, no problem at all!

Adrian tells me their initial focus in opening a sister joint for Bezirk ran more along the lines of a hole-in-the-wall operation.

But when they found and secured 7 Harrington Square, they decided there was no other way for it than to run with gusto, with the greater space at hand.

And a lovely space it is, too.

It’s kinda minimalist, but in a warming way.

 Photo: Kenny Weir

Photo: Kenny Weir

Naturally, Birdcage Cafe is doing a fine line in brekkies, including breakfast pumpkin gnocchi and apple crumble pancakes.

But with more room, and more room to cook, Birdcage Cafe is going further than Bezirk in terms of lunch offerings, running to – for instance – a Thai beef salad and a grilled salmon.

I’m told the menu testing has all been done, and I’m on hand for a sort-of softish opening for friends and family. So my lunch options are limited to the burgers … no matter.

Now, take it on board that my lunch has been prepared in the knowledge it is to be eaten by a food writer and that I did not pay for it.

That said … IMO (in my opinion) this fried chicken burger ($17) is a sensation!

There’s nothing particularly sophisticated about it, but …

A massive slab of crisp, juicy and tasty fried chook; cheese; rough-cut, excellent coleslaw; a single rasher of very good bacon.

Excellent chips on the side.

Really top stuff, it all is.

And so substantial that I have no room left for a chunk of Nutella baklava.

Adrian tells me they’re creating some of their sweet treats in-house, but are sourcing others from local specialists, such as Fresh Prince of Baklava.

Also keeping the righteous local vibe going are meat from Paddock to Table in Laverton and hams and the like from Sycamore Deli in Altona.

My cafe latte is marvellous.

 Photo: Kenny Weir

Photo: Kenny Weir