Auction Rooms Cafe in North Melbourne

Auction Rooms is a quick tram ride from the city, and is located near a few other brunch places. We arrived around 1 p.m. so it was very busy, and we were greeted by a very friendly waitress who found us a table. We decided to order the salmon fishcakes and the amaranth porridge, with a pot of breakfast tea and a pot of freshly brewed chai.

salmon fishcakes

Salmon & herb fishcakes with crispy marinated tofu, lime aioli and green papaya salad ($17)

Wendy ~ The salmon and herb fishcakes and salad were beautifully presented on a big plate, with a very nice combination of colours. The fishcakes had a croquette texture and taste to them, so they were lacking the “wow” factor. It looked like they were sitting on toast but it was actually a bed of fried tofu, and together these two components made up the soft-textured part of the dish. Contrasting this was the papaya salad, with had a good combination of crunchy vegetables. It had a strong citrus taste to it, which was different to the more sweet & sour flavour of a Vietnamese papaya salad. Also, the bitter cabbage flavour was stronger than any of the other vegetables. The dish wasn’t bad, but I’d prefer to try something else next time.

porridge

Porridge of amaranth, brown rice and quinoa with coconut milk, poached pear, vanilla yoghurt and pumpkin seed praline ($13)

Ani ~ This is a good porridge to try if you’re getting tired of classic oats and honey. The porridge was a decent portion size which left me feeling full and satisfied. It was thick and creamy with a delicious coconut flavour, and the grains were nice and soft while still having some texture. There was a good balance between the sweetness of the pumpkin seed praline, and the slight tartness of the dollops of yoghurt. The poached pear was tasty and added a nice flavour boost. My only criticism would be that the candied pumpkin seeds in the praline were quite hard, which disrupted the smoothness of the porridge.

tea and chai

Breakfast tea ($4) and freshly brewed chai with bonsoy ($5)

Wendy ~ This chai latte was made with chai leaves brewed in soy milk. It had the same spice combination as the other freshly brewed chais that I’ve tried, but it was a little less strong in flavour. This was probably because it arrived in a teapot with the leaves already strained, so perhaps there wasn’t enough time for the flavours to infuse into the milk.

The breakfast tea was a blend of 90% Sri Lankan and 10% Kenyan tea leaves.

Verdict: The service was friendly and the food was decent. The prices are pretty normal for brunch food. We look forward to trying some of the nearby brunch places soon, to see how they compare.

Location: 103-107 Errol St, North Melbourne. Their website is here.

Auction Rooms on Urbanspoon

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