The location alone of Sub-Station Café simply blew my mind. This ex electrical substation has been refitted as the perfect location for this open kitchen, counter and small outdoor area all rolled into one.
The entire place is clean, organised and beautifully decorated. One of the first things I noticed upon entry is a way of displaying the daily specials that I have never seen before: actual prepared plates of each of the three items along with their name and description written on a sign next to each. Very unique and it certainly helped one of my guests understand what shakshuka was as she hadn’t heard of it before. Once the dishes start to look a bit tired, they are remade.
Ordering and payment is done at the counter and you can pay while ordering or after which comes in handy if you’ll be heading back for more. The staff were on the ball although one couple at the table waited a few minutes longer for their meals than the others who had ordered their meals straight after. It didn’t matter though as owners Orit and Ram were extremely courteous.
The coffee was of excellent quality. Single Origin Roasters provide the beans while Sub-Station provide the magic. Each week, a different single bean coffee is offered so even if you visit often , there’s always a new variation for you.
A popular dish at our table was the Sub-Station breakfast ($16.50) which offers up some of the best fresh ingredients that Sub-Station has to offer. The two free range eggs are available poached or scrambled. One of my guests was prepared to be very critical of how well her eggs were poached and I’m happy to report that her expectations were exceeded as the golden yolk popped open when she dipped her knife in. Fresh avocado, spinach and tomato are all served on the side as well as some outstanding thick cut ham off the bone. All ingredients when combined on a fork with a touch of ricotta was a perfect combination.
The specials vary from day to day meaning that you may not see some of these dishes when you visit but you know you have found a kitchen that is a force to be reckoned with when they can add specials like shakshuka for one day and do it so damned well! My guest enjoyed her serving and the toast served alongside was a great way to scoop up the slightly spicy tomato base. The sauce had just the right amount of liquid and was dotted with a variety of vegetables and herbs. For those in search of a filling savoury dish, this would be a great choice.
My board was definitely the envy of the table. The French toast special was served with fresh fruit (pears, nectarines, strawberries and pomegranate) and a healthy (figuratively speaking) amount of “real” maple syrup! The bread itself was quite plain which didn’t matter because it was soft inside with a crispy crunch to the exterior. There was also sweetened ricotta to boot!
What did we miss? The free range eggs ($10) can be poached or scrambled and are served on sourdough toast with fresh tomato. Pile up the sides to create a hefty breakfast. The morning dream breakfast egg roll ($9) seems to be the perfect breakfast while on the run: “just baked station fresh roll with free range eggs, avocado, bacon, spinach, tomato, homemade sauce” while the Station baked granola with natural yoghurt, fresh fruit and organic honey ($12) is a great, light, healthy start.
We didn’t try any of the baked goods unfortunately but SSC bake their own spelt banana bread, savoury scrolls, gluten free brownies and more every morning.
The lunch menu boasts a big range of salads and sandwiches with new concoctions every day so keep an eye on the Sub-Station Café Facebook page.
Overall Rating: 19/25
Address: 124 McEvoy Street, Alexandria, 2015
Phone: 9557 9868
Payment Options: Credit card, EFTPOS, cash