My sister is back from Perú. A month passed by at turbo speed, one day we were dropping her at the airport and the next we were picking her up.
It was Sunday morning. A taxi took us to Dulwich Hill, where she lives. We stayed for a while in her apartment, while she told us about the family and all the delicious food she had eaten. Interestingly, she didn’t gain as much weight as I did in my last visit (yes, I’m jealous). She also gave us some gifts from our families (heaps of lúcuma powder, yay!). Then she had a shower and we decided to go out for brunch.
We were torn between two cafes: Sideways Deli and Last Drop. The sky didn’t look promising so we chose the closest one: Last Drop. On our way we passed by Fernandes Patisserie, I couldn’t help it and suggested getting a quick bite to sample their stuff. Gladys received a phone call so she stayed outside the shop, Alvaro and I got in and, as it often happens, were attracted by the same sweets. There were no labels in the display so we just pointed out what we wanted: one Portuguese custard tart or pastéi de nata and one (I think) baked custard. They were simply divine (although not “lite” at all).
Unfortunately, Last Drop was closed (we thought it was maybe because of the road works that were going on at the time). In part I’m glad it was, because Sideways Deli ended up being a terrific choice. Despite its location, away from the suburb’s commercial area, the cafe was packed.
After a short wait we were given the option of a table inside or one outside that had just became vacant. Because it was not raining, we chose to eat outside. After checking the menu and the specials blackboard through the window we made up our minds.
No surprises with Alvaro’s choice: he wanted one of the featured risotti, the one with goat’s curd, asparagus and mushrooms. The waitress who took our order wasn’t sure if they had goat’s curd because they had run out the day before and were offering feta cheese instead. She checked with the kitchen and yes, they had goat’s curd. Excellent customer service detail, most places just exchange the ingredients with no notice. Alvaro also ordered a beetroot, apple, carrot & ginger juice (you can mix and match whichever ingredients you want). Gladys ordered the goat cheese and pumpkin tart and I the Gypsy Ham panino and a bowl of salad.
The juice was very nice, it had the right balance of ingredients. You’d think that is hard to screw up a veggie and fruit juice but believe me, I’ve tasted some nasty ones.
Beetroot, apple, carrot & ginger juice
The risotto was just ok. It needed more salt and the rice lacked creaminess. But once salted it was nice.
Goat’s curd, asparagus & mushroom risotto ($17.90, if memory serves)
Gladys’ tart was a different story. It was simply perfect. Plus, the portion was generous and the fresh mixed salad was not made of leftover salad leaves (yeah, I still remember the vegetarian tart I had at Townhouse).
Goat cheese and pumpkin tart with mixed salad ($15.50)
My panino was fantastic, too. The flavours matched perfectly, the bread was warm and crunchy. The mixed salad (leaves, tomatoes, feta cheese, roasted capsicum and the delicious honey mustard dressing) was tasty and big enough to share with Alvaro.
Gypsy Ham panino – bocconcini, semi-dried tomatoes, baby spinach and seeded mustard ($9.30)
Mixed salad – bowl of mixed salad with homemade honey mustard dressing ($8.90)
We were absolutely stuffed but still needed some caffeine (well, Gladys needed it more than I after a 24-hour trip). She had a regular latte (she usually orders a weak one to avoid getting migraines but she wanted to stay alert to switch back to Sydney time) and I my usual soy cappuccino (when will cafes offer non-lactose milk?). Both coffees came with a tiny bear biscuit and were really good, with a great taste and well textured milk.
It seems I have found two excuses to visit my sister more frequently.
516 Marrickville Rd
Dulwich Hill NSW 2203
(02) 9568 2114
Sideways Deli Cafe
37 Constitution Rd
Dulwich Hill NSW 2203
(02) 9560 1425