Tonic & Grace Cafe
Food: Nyctophilia, Yo-gert!, Smash-a-cado
There seems to be a bit of a health food craze sweeping Malvern in recent months but Tonic & Grace aren’t your average health food cafe. With most items of their menu vegetarian, vegan and gluten free they’re making sure those of us with dietary requirements can still enjoy a great brunch choice (and don’t worry, they still do bacon).
Tonic’s idea is perfect, rather than build the meal around the meat, they build the meal and let you add your meat (or dairy) after. It’s the perfect solution to appeal to Melbourne’s growing vegan and vegetarian clientele without making themselves a “vegan cafe” which, let’s be honest, many of us meat eaters would run a mile from (yes even in Melbourne where the vegan food tastes great). There are about 15 dishes on the menu with many of your classic brunch favourites, all given that Tonic & Grace veggie twist!
We tried the smashed avo, protein pancakes and granola. The sesame and quinoa blended with the smashed avo gave it an interesting, nutty flavour, while leaving you feeling nice and full afterwards. With chunks of beetroot, radish and served on a beetroot hummus it’s very superfood heavy but it tastes fresh and interesting with every bite. To be honest, nothing at Tonic & Grace feels like you’ve taken a boring, healthy option. With lots of flavour, texture and colour, I don’t think you could ask much more from a smashed avo dish. Did I miss the poached egg? Not really, it’s still a filling dish and there’s so much going on you don’t even notice.
The protein pancakes were so filling!! I have to be honest, I was so nonchalant, ordering these and a smashed avo – because come on, how filling can peas be? Well let me tell you, while they didn’t keep me feeling full quite as long as something like a porridge, peas can in fact be pretty filling and I couldn’t finish them! They don’t taste healthy (or look it) drizzled with the dark chocolate ganache, and this light fluffy pancake dish is again full of texture with the soft strawberries and crunchy walnuts, and while I was a little disappointed my presentation wasn’t quite as good as others I’d seen on instagram I couldn’t complain about the flavours or indulgent feeling that comes with this dish.
Finally the coyo really lifts an enjoyable crunchy granola dish and I had some serious food envy watching Food Fiend Melbourne enjoy this. With so much fresh fruit and an accompaniment of micro herbs, it’s a dish that makes you want to be healthy – and probably the much better choice for our 9am brunch! (Which apparently is called breakfast). We washed these down with some great-looking, generous-sized, strong-tasting coffees – that left us still a little wired at 2pm!
What I have to say is the vegan friendliness of Tonic and Grace didn’t hit me in the face until after I’d left. Varied, interesting menu options, cool dish names and the freshness of the food are what catch your attention, and I enjoyed the bright, modern space. It was only much later when I was recommending the cafe to a fellow foodie did it dawn on me that most of their dishes were meat free! Great work Tonic and Grace, if that’s not a win for Veganism we don’t know what is!
Visual Menu: https://www.mryum.com/tonic
Address: 63 Glenferrie Road, Malvern
Mon 7am to 3:30pm
Tue 7am to 3:30pm
Wed 7am to 3:30pm
Thu 7am to 3:30pm
Fri 7am to 3:30pm
Sat 8am to 4pm
Sun 8am to 4pm
Parking: It’s actually not too bad, even though it’s Malvern. While we were there, there were street parking places regularly becoming available and there’s a reasonable sized car park just on the other side of Glenferrie Road. Alternatively, you could always park at nearby Malvern Central.
Getting here on PT: Take a Frankston Line train to Malvern, it’s about a 7 minute walk to Tonic & Grace. Alternatively, the 16 tram stops practically outside the door, the 5 just around the corner, or it’s still walkable if you alight the 6 at Glenferrie Road.
Disclaimer: We dined as guests of Tonic & Grace Cafe, Malvern. Reviews are honest and based on our own personal experiences. We cannot guarantee things at a cafe won’t change including, but not limited to, menu items and opening hours, so please confirm any details with the venue before visiting