238 Gertrude St
Fitzroy VIC 3065
+61 3 9416 4747
Given how we poor Melburnians have been cursed with heavy rains, winds and storms the last couple of days, it kinda seems like the meal that I’m about to cover, which happened on a beautifully sunny Friday morning, happened ten lifetimes ago. In fact, it only happened two weeks ago. Two weeks since I basked in sunshine and warmth, two weeks since Marty surprised me with a brand new red iPod nano, complete with a customised playlist of songs from our favourite bands (naw sweet, right?) and two weeks since I enjoyed a pot of amazingness in the form of baked eggs in lasagne flavour (yes, LASAGNE!) at Birdman Eating. Wahhh! Somebody please take me back, Noiseworks-style, to sunny days, Fitzroy cafes with weird names and baked eggs!
Sigh. A girl can only dream.
Okay, back to this entry before I start segueing to arbitrary topics such as MAC lipsticks, Andrew Bolt and birth control pills.
So after I picked up Marty from the airport, we made our way slowly down to Gertrude Street for some much-needed fuel. After a two-hour flight from Queensland, and being stuck in the tarmac for quite some time, Marty needed something hearty to sooth his aching stomach. Given that I had heard that Birdman Eating did decent hearty breakfasts and given how their baked eggs are more renowned than Dane Swan’s on-field abilities, our (well, okay, my) choice to eat there made sense. We originally chose to sit on a bench by the window so that we can take awesome photos and people-watch. The sun, however, was seducing us to come outside so we moved to one of the tables outdoors. This meant that I had to deal with the glaring sun creating havoc on all my photos as well as a boxer called Daisy crabbing pulled pork from Marty but that’s the sort of stuff I must deal with in order to get some colour into my Twilight-pale skin. Oh yes, and skin cancer but we’ll worry about that later on.
We started off with some coffees to wake us up from our drowsiness. My latte ($3.50) may have had a slightly thinner texture to what I’m accustomed to, but the flavour of it made it up for the thinness. It was sweet and silky all over, with a slight piquancy at the end of every sip.
Marty had the smoked pulled pork, shredded lettuce and mint, open sandwich with roast pineapple sorbet ($16). Recalling a conversation that we had not too long ago about pulled pork, Marty decided that this time was as good as any to eat pulled pork for the first time. He wasn’t too wild on the idea of a pineapple sorbet being plonked on top of the sandwich though (I agree – who likes soggy sandwiches, anyway?!), but luckily the waitress heeded his request to serve the sorbet separately.
We both didn’t find the sandwich particularly remarkable. Having had pulled pork at Trunk Diner (and enjoying it), I found Birdman’s version a tad too sweet and the pineapple sorbet, which was lovely on its own, didn’t do anything BUT make it sweeter which wasn’t the effect that I was looking for in a savoury dish. The lettuce and mint salad, served on another slice of bread, did provide some respite from the sweetness and heaviness of the pork but not much. Marty regretted not choosing the Warm Ploughman’s lunch, which sounded like a better option as it contained corned beef (wagyu marble score 6), welsh rarebit and sweet mustard pickle ($16). Forlorn yum.
Daisy the boxer, however, seemed to dig the pulled pork…
Thankfully my dish was a raging success. Birdman regulars would know that the café is famous for its baked eggs, which come in a variety of ever-changing flavours. There are usually four different types to choose from – refer to the blackboard inside – and while all of the choices available on the day sounded fantastic, I knew I couldn’t get past the lasagne baked eggs ($14) which was essentially two gorgeously viscous free-range eggs baked in a rich, comforting lasagne and served with two slices of ciabatta and butter. Sexiness.
Every little bite was delicious. Using bits of bread as a spoon, I hungrily devoured the robust beef ragu and the silky pasta sheets, deliciously mixed in with a generous layer of béchamel sauce and the gooey eggs. I was probably only a quarter of the way in when I started to get half-full. Ditching the bread and butter – regrettably, I might add – I tried to finish the rest of the lasagne but sadly, the combination of pasta, meat, eggs, cheese and béchamel was too much for the first meal of the morning. Even Marty (as in, he with the iron stomach) couldn’t finish the whole thing off for me.
We might not have liked the pulled pork, but I definitely liked my eggs so I’ll definitely come back for brunch another time. Birdman’s ever-changing baked eggs menu will always give me an excuse to make a return visit – and bless them. With our stomachs full, we made our way down Brunswick Street where we hung out with babushkas in the projects (heeeh!) before making our way to Naked For Satan for infused vodkas (too early? Never!). Probably not the best idea after eating such a hearty meal but hey, it was the weekend. And the weather was incredible. *stares forlornly at the grey skies and dark clouds from the window*