If, like us, coffee is life, then you’ll be pretty darn happy to hear about new Parnell café, Simon & Lee.
David Lee, founder of our all-time favorite café hot-spots Major Sprout and Dear Jervois along with Ollie Simon, formerly of Supreme Coffee and Six Barrel Soda Co. have joined forces to produce an exceptional café in the oh-so-cool downtown Parnell district. Tucked away off Parnell’s main strip, comes Simon & Lee, an emulsion of Korean and European cuisine set to rock your world.
David and Ollie have designed the café’s interior, with foundations of natural wood and painted steel with accents of red that highlight the room. Custom-made light fittings flown in from renown Melbourne interior lighting designer Christopher Boots top it off and the resul tis a fresh, chic space in an old character brick building.
The menu is evident of their passion for culture, coffee, flavor and seasonal produce. For breakfast there’s a twist on the classic eggs benedict, served with delicate buckwheat and tapioca crumpets, kimchi and miso béchamel, nori, sesame seeds and either bacon or salmon.
For lunch, the agedashi tofu caught our eye—tempura tofu that’s crispy on the outside, perfectly silken in the middle and sitting atop a steaming mound of soba noodles with mushroom broth, fresh scallions. It’s finished with daikon and bonita flakes. Swoon.
The coffee is strong and smooth (just how we like it). Simon & Lee serves espresso from Wellington boutique roastery Flight Coffee and a constantly rotating ‘house pour’ of ready-to-drink filter coffee. These guys take what’s in the cup seriously!
Service is slick and with familiar faces from the likes of Orphans Kitchen on the front of house team, we’re not surprised. Word on the street is that a liquor license is on the horizon and soon you’ll find Brothers Beer on tap and a carefully curated wine list with predominantly organic and biodynamic wine.
From stellar coffee, to a banging brunch menu, Simon & Lee delivers big time, and will be a guaranteed stalwart with the locals.
Image credit: Kate Rose