To me, the test of a good café is its Big Breakfast. Firstly, it must be served all day (especially on weekends). Then, it must have a choice of eggs, some decent toast, hash browns, sausage, mushrooms and tomato. Parsley sprig is optional. Tomato sauce must be provided, if requested.
This entrant is from Trojans Café Restaurant in Darling St, Balmain. It is a café during the day, and a sort of Greco-Italian-Oz restaurant at night. My only previous experience here was a couple of years ago, where the food and service were forgettable.
This time, we sat at the footpath tables, under an umbrella on a sunny day. Be warned, though, you are separated from the speeding traffic on Darling St by only a flimsy-looking metal fence (Leichhardt Council trying to give people an alfresco dining experience while protecting themselves from 3rd party claims). It’s nice out here, if you have faith in others’ driving ability.
The Big Breakfast ($16.50) comes with the works. The bacon is (thankfully) a full strip, not just the short cut, with the rind left on. The toast is Italian sourdough, nicely toasted, but not too much. The poached eggs did not have that horrid vinegar flavour (yay!) and the sausages were beef chipolatas that were some of the better ones I’ve had. Mushrooms were a mushy dark colour, but tasty nonetheless. Tomato was okay, nothing special. The hash browns were really good, crispy on the outside but soft on the inside. My only complaint was that only a measly triangle of butter was provided, certainly not enough to cover the 3 slices of toast. And we had to ask for tomato sauce.
Actually, I had another complaint – the plunger that my English breakfast tea came in was broken (and stained), so I had to remove the lid in order to pour out the tea. Just as well the tea came in a tea bag(!), otherwise the leaves would have poured out as well. The tea also came with a waving Tiny Teddy biscuit, but no sugar (and I like my sugar!).
So, all in all, a reasonable experience at Trojans. The BB was pretty good, and the place was let down only by the flakey crockery and not enough condiments.