I wish I had a neighbourhood cafe as friendly and inviting as Ave Cucina in Coorparoo. Veronica and Shadi from the first series of My Restaurant Rules have been operating now for three years and have gone from strength to strength with their Italian/Lebanese cafe come restaurant.
It was really busy at 9am on a Saturday morning for breakfast. Clearly a favourite among the locals but four of us found a corner booth under the air con. A little mishap with an exploding water glass did not faze the staff who cleaned up the shattered glass quickly and with smiling faces. The breakfast menu is well thought-out offering some familiar favourites and some innovative choices.
Unfortunately the heat really plays havoc with my eating ability (not a good thing for a foodie) so I chose the fruit and nut toast with ricotta and honey. It was great, no complaints here except I would have loved a more creamy ricotta for easy spreading. Al chose the Lebanese breakfast. An unusual combination of two fried eggs with a sprinkling of zaatar spice sitting on lebanese bread with a small bowl of olives, cucumber and a yoghurt dressing. A really great choice for a hot summer morning. Al was surprised at how well the olives and eggs went together so I might experiment with this combo in my kitchen. Our friend Mr B went with Turkish bread and avocado. Not on the menu but clearly the kitchen was happy to accommodate. I noticed ricotta pancakes (my favourite) are on the breakfast menu but only on Sundays.
Oh yes, did I mention it was a really hot morning? I also had a pineapple and mint frappe which was icy and refreshing. Coffee is by Di Bella. Looking for a big breakfast, order Rosarios eggs, Sicillan style poached eggs in a slow cooked spicy tomato sugo with garden peas, herbs and pane fingers or the pan hash, baked potato, pumpkin, spinach with grilled chorizo, confit garlic, topped with a fried egg.
Ave Cucina will soon be opening Friday and Saturday nights for dinner so I look forward to seeing how they evolve over the next couple of years.
Verdict: We’ll definitely be back to try the lunch menu.
16 Eva Street, Coorparoo