So, it’s common knowledge among foodies that Gerard’s Bistro in James Street is the hot spot for a mouth-watering middle eastern, north African inspired lunch or dinner but did you know that they do one of the best weekend breakfasts in Brisbane. This is just my opinion of course, and I know, it’s a big call, but this was seriously a brilliant breakfast and not a pancake in sight!
Gerard’s Bistro is pushing the boundaries of breakfast food and Chef Ben Williamson has to be applauded for creating food that is packed with flavour, innovative and incredibly good value for money.
Al and I attended a Tweatup breakfast banquet with some other food-lovers on a Saturday morning. We were served a selection of items from the breakfast menu and my favourite was the ‘Muhallabia’ a sweet almond pudding with rose, pstachio, Bee One Third and James St rooftop honey and pomegranate ($10). I loved the texture and delicate flavours of this dish. It was feminine and pretty and a perfect start to the more robust breakfast flavours to follow.
Served next, avocado, Persian feta, za’atar, lemon and pickled radish ($12), Black pudding, fried quail eggs, manchego custard, flamed grapes, smoked almonds ($19), smoked potato croquette ($6) and a dish of Shakshouka which consists of tomato kasundi, merguez, egg, blackened onion, hung yoghurt, eggs and a herb salad ($24).
Some of the above terms I wasn’t familiar with so I did a search.
Kasundi: a rich, unctuous tomato sauce or pickle.
Merguez: a spicy sausage mixture.
Hung yoghurt: the thick creamy yogurt you are left with after you drain yogurt in a muslin or cheese cloth.
Shakshouka: meaning ‘a mixture’ in Arabic slang. A dish of eggs in a rich tomato sauce traditionally served up in a cast iron pan with bread to mop up the sauce.
The Shakshouka is a share dish for two people. It’s hearty and if you like big, punch-you-in-the-mouth flavours, you’ll love it. It was a little too rich for me for breakfast at 8.30am but as a late brunch dish this would be very satisfying.
The avocado and Persian feta dish was refreshing, I especially liked the pickled radish. I’m not a fan of black pudding but I did try the quail egg, flamed grapes, manchego custard and smoked almond crumb and this was yum. Al said the combination of all these flavours with the black pudding was a stand-out. He really loved this dish.
Some of the other breakfast items include; slow poached duck egg, Jerusalem artichoke, almond migas and roasted garlic ($16), Sardines on toast with confit tomato, smoked curd and preserved lemon ($14), spiced granola, grilled fig, organic orange blossom yoghurt ($12), watermelon, berry and mint salad, cinnamon, vanilla yoghurt ($10).
Gerard’s also does a lovely choice of juices: watermelon, apple, pomegranate and mint; beetroot, apple, carrot and celery; orange, pineapple, lemon and ginger; tomato, worcestershire, harissa, lemon, all juices $4. Choices of tea are from the Byron Bay Tea Company and coffee is from Lavazza. The only disappointment of breakfast was the coffee. With so many fantastic boutique roasters in Brisbane, it would be great to see Gerard’s serving an interesting single origin bean to match up with such a creative breakfast menu.
Gerard’s Bistro has been on my list of ‘must try’ for quite a while so I was really excited about sampling their breakfast menu. I can’t wait to go back for dinner.
If you are really sick of bacon and eggs, pancakes and corn fritters then I highly recommend Gerard’s Bistro. It’s fantastic value for money. So, wake up your palate and introduce yourself to a new kind of breakfast menu.
Open for breakfast from 8am till 11:30am on Saturday and Sunday.
Open, lunch and dinner, Tuesday to Sunday: 12:00pm – late
ph: 3852 3822
Gerard’s Lane, 14 / 15 James St, New Farm