My partner first took me to Junto under a great deal of duress. He kept saying “You’ll like it, I promise!”and I kept saying “It’s in a local shopping strip! Oh my god, you want me to eat in a local shopping strip like some kind of pauper?!” Because it is rather hidden away – on one side there’s the kind of newsagency you know sells Freddos that expired in 2003 and on the other side there’s some kind of strange yoga shop. But he was right, my Gareth, and Junto became our regular weekend haunt for a good while.
However, we moved away from the area a couple of months ago, and I hadn’t been back to visit, so I thought it high time I did just that. I have often sworn on my children’s lives that the potato rostis here are the best Melbourne has to offer, and my heart warmed at the idea of sitting at The Long Table this morning on my own, with a good chance to properly savour them.
The first thing I noticed was the lack of familiar wait staff. Hm, went I. Hm. Then the girl who took my drinks order said “Uh, okay …” when I asked for a Preshafruit apple juice, and brought back a freshly squeezed one instead. A different waitress took my food order without writing it down (worrisome) and then the original waitress came back to serenade me with, “Hey, has anyone like taken your order?”
This is not the Junto I know and love, I thought, but drank my freshly squeezed and enjoyed it until I got to the pith at the bottom that always makes you more thirsty than you were before you started.
Average. Again I received no garnish! I mean, I don’t like it and always scrape it off, but it does help the eggs to look less like eye balls plucked from the soul of the pig you’re about to eat, you know?
I’m having a gluten free day and didn’t ask for toast, but it came with some anyway. I poked it and it seemed okay. What happened to buttering toast, by the by?
Okay, this is where actual tears started flowing. The rosti at Junto has been my reason for living since about March. They’re made in house and usually you get two and they’re hot and moist. Today I got one and it was dry. It was dry. Instead of pulling apart like a delicious toffee, bits of it snapped off and broke away (like my heart). Very disappointing.
A little on the brown side, but perfectly ripe and delicious.
“Grilled” ham is a bit of a misnomer. “Browned at the edges” ham might be more apt. Still, there was plenty and I have no further complaint.
Just beyond perfect. Someone had magicked those suckers out of the pan just as the white cooked but before the yolk had really had a chance to get hot. I had to poke my knife in tip first to really get them started. They could not have been more delicious.
Eggs at Junto will set you back about $19, but if you get the Scandinavian (eggs, rosti, spinach and smoked salmon) you’ll only pay $16. They only charged me the bottled juice price for my freshly squeezed, which was a nice touch.