What to order at Florian

Published on 12 May 2021

Photo: Florian's orecchiette (credit: Annika Kafcaloudis)

Bringing you all the breakfast essentials: fluffy French omelettes, Austrian pastries served with house-made jam and gravlax with toast and jammy eggs.

The latest addition to Rathdowne Village is Florian, a cafe that's all about hyper-local produce. Owners and longtime friends Dom Gattermayr and Rose Richards had been searching for a while when they stumbled upon the former Rathdowne Street Food Store and Small Victories space. Swing by for an Austrian-inspired breakfast dish, avo-toast or eggs Florentine with a Florian twist. 

Here are Gattermayr's picks on what to order when you grab a table curbside.

How about a drink?
Start your morning with a macchiato made with Allpress beans or one of our freshly squeezed citrus juices. Once we’re settled, we plan on opening for aperitivo hour which will involve a small selection of Australian and European wines alongside a tiny cocktail menu. 

I’m here for a good time, not a long time.
Nothing beats a fresh croissant served with homemade preserves and salted butter. If you eat outside on Rathdowne street, you could be somewhere on the streets of Paris. But if you’re here for something more substantial, our avocado toast served on rye bread and piled with herbs, a combination of all the desired flavours in one dish: creamy, tart, smoky and earthy. The secret is the zesty green herb sauce slathered just underneath the sliced half avocado. If you’re coming at lunch, all of our daily counter sandwiches and salads come takeaway.

Got anything light and fresh?
Our herb and Gruyère omelette is the one menu item that steers away from bread, served instead with a few leaves of zingy butter lettuce and mizuna. At lunchtime, I would suggest our fish dish which changes every few weeks. Last month it was crumbed sardines with fresh market tomatoes, and now it’s calamari salad with grapefruit, fennel, white beans and nasturtium leaves. Rather than just salt and pepper, we use sesame and nigella seeds, citrus, or spices like paprika as seasoning, which means that even our light meals contain an unexpected depth of flavour. 

I like tasty food but I don’t eat animals.
Our food is based on clean ingredient-focused dishes. This means vegetables are key to the menu, whether they’re fresh, pickled, fermented or braised. We serve a mushroom dish with pickled enoki, sautéed field mushroom and a homemade macadamia cream, which is rich, hearty and completely vegan. I love this dish for its uncommon sweet and smoky flavours. Now that they’re in season, we’ll be using foraged pine mushrooms and slippery jacks as much as possible.

Name the dish that is quintessentially Florian.
It would have to be the eggs Florian. A play on classic eggs Florentine, we braise cavolo nero in lots of smoked paprika, onion, garlic, and then give it a squeeze of lemon to finish. On top goes a soft egg, béarnaise sauce and a shaving of aged Comté. Our gravlax on toast is another dish that’s here to stay. We cure the salmon with salt and sugar for three to four days depending on the cut, meaning it’s creamy and subtle once it comes out of the fridge. It’s served with a soft-boiled egg, fluffy whipped ricotta, sliced radish and a fresh tarragon garnish, simple and delicate flavours.

Let’s go big. Let’s go crazy. What have you got for me?
Without a doubt the farmer’s breakfast, or come midday, the ploughman’s lunch. Similar to what you might receive at a bed and breakfast in Austria, the plate has a changing offering of cheeses (at the moment an aged Comté and Emmental), house-sliced cured meats such as prosciutto and mortadella from Donati’s Fine Meats around the corner, house-pickled baby peppers, bread-and-butter pickles, a boiled egg and a pot of seasonal fruit compote. Follow that with some orecchiette served with pork sausage and ’nduja ragû and juicy Portarlington mussels sprinkled with crunchy pangrattato for a satisfying lunch with friends. 

And to close?
Finish with a slice of tart or a buttery handmade Austrian pastry paired with a delicate tea from Assembly and you’ll be content. 

Florian, 617 Rathdowne St, Carlton North, floriancarlton.com.au, @florian.eatery.


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