Grand Lafayette – The Overview…
Iconic raindrop cakes and Asian fusion sum up a Grand Lafayette experience. Relocating from Port Melbourne these guys are now seeking to crack the tricky Prahran brunch scene.
Food: Raindrop Cake, Chicken and Waffles, Melon Hot cakes, Rosewater Monster Drink
Grand Lafayette are now occupying a large industrial-look unit just off Chapel Street. The back wall is dominated by the open kitchen and serving area with the seating areas being divided by open shelving. The larger of the two features earthy greens, greys and pale wood interchanged with more harsh-looking black wire chairs lending themselves more easily to that warehouse kind of feel. The smaller area has more of a bar vibe with a pastel shaded world map brightening up the wall and low round tables – it’s ideal for a relaxed catch up with friends. While the cafe itself is spacious, low hanging lights and tightly packed tables alongside seating benches make it more cluttered and cosy.
Being a ridiculously hot day, we started with two of the monster’s drinks – iced spheres garnished with thyme and flowers served with organic coconut water. While I expected a few more theatrics with the drink – the sphere took a ridiculously long time to melt – there’s no doubt it’s incredibly refreshing and will have you cooled down from the summer heat in no time. There’s something about the rose and coconut water combination that just left me feeling fresh right down to my pores. We then sampled the signature chicken and waffles, the melon hot cake and obviously two of those iconic raindrop cakes.
The chicken and waffles looks a fairly small serve, but once you get into it there’s 3 big pieces of fried chicken in there! It certainly looks the part with plenty going on on the plate. Flavour wise the berry coulis dominates bringing a sticky sweetness to the fried chicken. Sadly the cheese sauce does get a little lost within all this making it more of sweet dish than possibly intended. Overall though it’s a good chicken and waffle dish and I can see why they chose this as a signature item on their menu.
The hotcakes were much more simply presented and took advantage of many classic summer flavours: honeydew melon, blueberries and strawberries. We felt the dish didn’t quite look as good as we had seen on insta – which is always a disappointment but they were some of the fluffiest hot cakes we’ve tried. We really couldn’t fault the taste AT ALL. The flavours felt well chosen and the stripped back simplicity of this dish worked well.
The raindrop cakes were bigger than I imagined and they look very cool! A zero calorie dessert always gets points in my eyes too. We tried the rose and mint – preferring the sharper taste of the mint one, which acted as an ideal after meal palate cleanser and was very settling on the stomach. They’re a fun dessert to try and they definitely satisfy those sweet cravings while being better for you that the vast majority of desserts – and a more enjoyable eat that most “low calorie” options. At $9 each, they’re not going to be your go-to every day but they are definitely worth a try (In fact, they’ve made our must try dishes of 2019).
While Grand Lafayette offers an enjoyable cafe experience we felt they were still lacking a little of the wow factor to really break into the Chapel Street scene. They’ve got some great dishes on the menu and good ideas. We’re hoping that now they’ve settled in they’ll continue to look for great new ways to entice people to go those extra few streets from the bright lights and more well established names of Chapel Street and give them a try. If they can manage that we see a long and happy future for these guys in Prahran.
Address: 9 Clifton Street, Prahran
Mon 8am to 3pm
Tue 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 9pm
Wed 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 9pm
Thu 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 9pm
Fri 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 10pm
Sat 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 10pm
Sun 8am to 3pm and 5:30pm to 9pm
Parking: We visited on PT, and parking in that area is a bit tricky at the moment, since the carpark behind Coles closed. You may find a spot on a side street, or a paid spot, however, definitely best to PT it if you can.
Getting here on PT: It’s on the 72 tram route, a couple of minutes walk from the 78 tram (alight at High Street/Malvern Road) and about 5-10 minutes walk from Prahran or Windsor Stations on the Sandringham Line.
Disclaimer: We dined as guests of Grand Lafayette, Prahran. Reviews are honest and based on our own personal experiences. We cannot guarantee things at a restaurant won’t change including, but not limited to, menu items and opening hours, so please confirm any details with the venue before visiting.