Glenferrie Rd’s brunch scene is already pretty pumping, but there’s always room for one more. Especially when that one is serving dark chocolate & pea protein pancakes with strawberries, roasted walnuts, salted caramel and dark choc ganache.
Melbourne, meet Tonic & Grace.
The basic premise here is ‘Eat healthy. Eat delicious.’ The menu is built around gluten-free, lactose-free, veggo and vegan dishes (with a few cheeky cheats, like smoked salmon and free-range bacon, which you can get as a side).
The Nyctophilia pancakes are pretty hard to go past, but there’s a couple of other brunch treats you should probably check out. First, the Mariachi Bowl, which pretty much tastes like a Mexican fiesta band set up camp in your mouth: sweet corn and tomato salsa, black baked beans, smashed av’, coriander, corn chips and chilli.
They’re even doing proper okonomiyaki Japanese pancakes! The proper kind too. Spring onion, green algae, summer veg, daikon and house-made Kewpie mayo. These things are the tits.
The drinks are likewise free of guilt. A range of healthy smoothies (blended to order), fresh juices, Red Star coffee and even homemade tonics. There’s nothing like a shot of turmeric, pineapple and coconut water to help you blitz that morning deadline.
Tonic & Grace hasn’t gone crazy on the fit-out, which is nice. It’s just a simple, contemporary cafe—big timber communal table up front, white-washed walls, artful greenery and a vintage Ruggero espresso machine. It’s Melbourne cafe 101, but it gets the job done.
Malvern, check this baby out.
Image credit: Jenna Fahey-White