As a Peruvian I feel compelled to know what’s happening in the Sydney food scene with regard to my national cuisine. The discovery that a cafe in Alexandria was serving Peruvian rolls not only sparked my curiosity but set me on a mission to investigate if the chicharrón was being properly made.
The Copper Mill is always busy but we managed to score a table. The menu revealed a few Peruvian suspects: chicharrón in the aforementioned Peruvian rolls and in tacu-tacu, and locro as an element of other dish, supporting the rumors that the cafe chef is indeed Peruvian.
As much as we both love tacu-tacu (a fried football of mixed rice and beans) we like our guts more and we decided to go with a safer option: the Peruvian roll on gluten-free bread. To put things in context, pan con chicharrón is a roll with fried sliced sweet potato, chicharrón (pork belly that has been boiled until all the water evaporates and then fried in its own -or added- fat) and salsa criolla (thinly sliced red onion pickled in lime juice). The guys at The Copper Mill have added a fried egg to bring it one step closer to the familiar bacon & egg roll, plus some lemon mayo for texture sake. The result was good, perhaps not the best chicharrón I’ve ever had but a nice glimpse of my homeland cuisine.
Peruvian roll ($10 + $1.50 for the gluten-free bread)
Our second dish was a beef hash (corned beef, fresh radish, caramelised onions, poached egg, hazelnut dukkah, baby herbs) that we ordered with an extra poached egg. This hash comes with mixed with cubes of cooked potato making it a substantial base for the fresh and delicate radish slices and microherbs. I could have this for brunch every day.
Beef hash ($15)
The cafe has a nice variety of choices for the caffeine-seeking customers. I had a cold drip coffee that was smooth and refreshing. Alvaro ordered a coconut hot chocolate thinking that it would contain only coconut milk but it had regular milk too, which meant he couldn’t finish it. It was also very very sweet.
Coconut hot chocolate ($5), cold drip coffee ($4.50)
The Copper Mill
Suite B, 338-356 Mitchell Road
Alexandria NSW 2015
(02) 9517 3214