Chez Dre @ South Melbourne, Australia

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

In my opinion, Australian cafes serves one of the best breakfast and coffee. It has always appears to me that they serve healthy and hearty food with the options of having it gluten free and using the local produces.

During my graduation trip to Australia, I visited Chez Dré in South Melbourne. Well Australia is known for its chill and relax atmosphere and since its summer and the weather was perfect, we took a long walk (approximately 30 minutes) to the café.

- Get to Flinders Street station and lookout for the pedestrian access to Southbank. It required entering the station with myki card (similar to Singapore’s ezlink card).
- Walk along the Yarra River until you reach Crown Melbourne.
- After Crown Melbourne turn left and it’s straight all the way (it's the same route to South Melbourne Market).
- Chez Dré is located in a alley off the South Melbourne market.

Chez Dré is a modern bakery & café that specialises in French bakery and breakfast. Chez Dré is the hard work of Andrea (Dre) Reiss, built after extensive time and experience working in some of the most esteemed restaurants in London and Paris. 

The café it split into two sections, indoor area and a courtyard where the main entrance is. It offers a family friendly atmosphere with baby chairs available and a dog friendly courtyard. We waited for less than 20 minutes to have our table and I was glad to have it indoors near the windows.

The period I visited falls on December to January and it were considered a holiday for most cafes so do take note of the change in opening times. Summer menu were served.

Eggs Your Way | A$10.5 (gluten friendly option available | A$1.0) - poached, coddled, scrambled or fried with croissant or toasted sourdough. We ordered scrambled eggs and got omelette-like eggs, it was decent. Furthermore, it’s a pity that we came all the way here for its croissant and it’s sold out. Saw them baking a new batch but they mentioned that it was for a la carte and even if I want to top it up, they wouldn’t allow. To me, I think they were pretty stringent and it kind of ruin my experience.

On the other hand, the highly raved for one of the best Croque Monsieur | A$13.5 here was nicely done and it definitely rocked my boat. Béchamel grilled sourdough sandwiched with smoked ham, emmental cheese and dijon mustard. That warm cheesy centred with the crusty sourdough…couldn’t have it other way.

Brioche French Toast | A$17.5 were amazingly good, especially the crisp exterior and buttered centre. It goes along with crème brulee mascarpone, strawberries, pistachio praline, raspberry coulis and meringue. Overall I loved the sweet and sour balance together with the accompaniments that gave it more texture. It would be something worth looking forward to if you are dining here.

Besides the mains and good coffee, the bakery also sells artisan breads for take away. No wonder it’s known for its breads when all these are baked in-house using traditional techniques which comprises of organic flours and overnight fermentation.

For sweeter pastries, head over to their sister café, Bibelot, located next door. We were too full to stuff anymore food and we had activities lined up that day like shopping at the South Melbourne Market and attending Planetshakers service.

Address: Rear of 285-287 Coventry Street, South Melbourne 3205

Opening Hours:
Daily: 7.00am - 4.00pm
(Kitchen closed: weekdays: 3:00pm, weekends: 3.30pm)

Holiday Trading (28 Dec 2015 - 11 Jan 2016):
Daily: 8:00am - 3:00pm (kitchen closes at 2:30pm)

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