April: “Cafe Sofia was recommended to me years ago by some local Erkinites. I have memories of pancakes and coffee and inappropriate jokes over breakfast at 2pm. Everyone seems quite accepting in Erskinville so you won’t feel embarrassed if your friends do tell bad jokes rather loudly. Cafe Sophia remained in the back of my mind until last weekend when we were milling over which cafe to sample.”
It’s a deceptively large cafe. There are a small number of tables on the sidewalk and all you can see when you look inside is the kitchen. As you enter the cafe there is a multitude of tables and even a covered courtyard beyond this. The staff are friendly, rushing orders around the place and customers mill around the counter reading the menu on a sizable blackboard.
There is a large selection of fruit whips and smoothies. The banana, guava and passionfruit fruit whip ($5.50) caught my eye and was a nice departure from the standard mixed berry and pineapple/orange options. The passionfruit seeds were crunchy and April enjoyed having to chew my fruit whip. The banana and guava was thick and delicious, making her very happy.
While it looked impressive, opinions were divided over the apricot and raspberry smoothie ($5.50). While the majority enjoyed the flavours, we could all agree that we could not taste the apricot. Where was it? The drink was thick and cold, the dairy to fruit ratio was well maintained.
Yet another fruity concoction graced our table in the form of a pineapple, strawberry and mint fruit whip ($5.50). The mint added a fresh bite to the drink and the pineapple and strawberry proved a good marriage. It was a great drink for a warm autumn morning. We hope winter holds off so we can continue to enjoy these chilled fruit whips!
The coffee was average. The skim cappuccino ($2.90) arrived quickly and looked promising but our advice is to stick to the smoothies and fruit whips.
The French toast with bacon and banana ($10.50) looked simple and tasted fantastic. The white bread had been cooked very well and was delicious with the maple syrup that is served on the side. The only complaint is that the dish is too small. Had the orderer known, he would have ordered a double portion. Instead, he ordered the bacon and egg roll for round 2…
We had to open the roll up to reveal just how good it was. The bacon and egg roll with cheese ($5.90) is served with your choice of sauce and was observed to be an extremely popular takeaway choice for other patrons. The BBQ sauce our breakfast guest chose tasted great. The roll was toasted but soft and fluffy and was served with a small balsamic-dressed salad. One disappointment was the relatively small amount of bacon. Luckily there was some spare at our table!
How great it is to find homemade eggs as opposed to the canned variety. Two people at our table enjoyed their homemade baked beans with poached egg and sourdough toast ($9.50). However beware if you don’t enjoy dill as it was on top of and throughout this dish. One of the people eating the beans sat picking the fresh dill off the dish and kept asking “Dill on beans, why???? Dill on eggs? Why?” We’re not entirely sure why, but they probably should have mentioned the ingredient on the menu. The beans were hearty and the poached egg soft and runny on the inside. April loves eggs like this and enjoyed dipping her sourdough into the yolk. She doesn’t mind dill either so was pretty happy. The dish itself was a reasonable size – the two servings at our table went back to the kitchen unfinished.
The dish on the board reads eggs, toast, mushrooms & tomato ($7.90) but we requested that the mushrooms be swapped for spinach. They obliged and served a good vegetarian-optioned meal. The poached eggs were very malformed and cooked slightly longer than usual. Although it doesn’t look like much, we were impressed with the staff’s willingness to cater to personal requests. They didn’t complain and they had one very satisfied customer as a result.
Erskinville is an interesting area of Sydney. We recommend checking out the local deli and florist. If you’re lucky you can buy stainless steel tea pots out of a cardboard box by the side of the road for the low price of $8. If you’ve got time we recommend a late brunch followed by people watching on the sidewalk. When you’re done, jump on a train to the city or stroll up to Newtown for some cosmopolitan window shopping.
Overall Rating: 16.5/25
Phone: 9386 5964
Address: 7 Swanson Street, Erskineville, 2043
Payment Options: Cash