Pinkie Cafe, Ivanhoe
Minimal is the theme at Pinkie Ivanhoe. From the plating to the decor, this busy cafe is bringing modern brunch to Ivanhoe.
Food: Corn toast, sweet ‘n’ salty pancakes, chilli scramble
Despite visiting Pinkie well past peak brunch hour, this cafe was still booming and we were very grateful for our reserved table. Even with the less than favourable wind outside, many people were braving their snazzy, sun-drenched courtyard to enjoy a bit of winter alfresco dining. We settled down for quite a wait, anticipating that the staff would be struggling with the demand – particularly given the suburban location. However, while clearly busy, staff maintained a pleasant and attentive service throughout our meal and our dishes were served in really good time – I could see the open kitchen from our table too, and they got all three plates out within a couple of minutes of each other!
Pinkie is long and bright, and while it does attract local families, it’s clearly the go-to hip place for younger couples and groups to catch up for a latte or a lunch. The menu has a decent number of dishes which are pushing the envelope, along with some of those familiar brunch dishes too. We tried the corn toast, chilli scramble and sweet ‘n’ salty pancakes.
The corn toast is something I’ve never tried before and I had mixed feelings on this dish. There was a good serve of salty bacon hidden under the corn, but the miso butter and herbs were a little lost and it felt like the dish was just missing a little something to jazz it up. I’m glad I tried it and it’s definitely different, but i probably wouldn’t rush back to order it again.
Our other two dishes however, were big hits. The chilli scramble was so rich and creamy with that nice, strong (but short of setting your mouth on fire) kick. We loved how Pinkie used fresh chilli, and added a generous serve of feta. The chunky cut chorizo helped make this a substantial and delicious dish. We weren’t sure about the choice of flatbread instead of the usual sourdough, but it helps to make the dish a real stand-out and so we decided it’s a calculated risk on Pinkie’s part!
Finally we ended with the sweet ‘n’ salty pancakes. The pancakes are so soft – but to be honest, they’re not the highlight here – the combination of sweet and salty is just perfect and you just want to keep eating more of that flavour. There’s not a lot of this dish and it really emphasises Pinkie’s simplistic cooking style – of trying to create these smart dishes, with just a small number of ingredients. By drizzling the pancakes in the salty dulce de leche and pairing them with the not overly sweet banana, instead of a variety of berries, they ensure that the saltiness persists with every mouthful and you never lose that excellent flavour balance. I’d eat these every day!
Address: 1 Westley Avenue, Ivanhoe
Mon 7am to 4pm
Tue 7am to 4pm
Wed 7am to 4pm
Thu 7am to 4pm
Fri 7am to 4pm
Sat 7:30am to 4pm
Sun 7:30am to 4pm
Parking: There’s plenty of street parking and nearby carparks (less that 1 minutes walk) for up to 3 hours, so you should easily find somewhere to leave your car while you brunch.
Getting here on PT: It’s just a couple of minutes walk from Ivanhoe train station on the Hurstbridge Line. The 548 and 549 buses also run nearby.
Disclaimer: We dined as guests of Pinkie, Ivanhoe. 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.