The best part about breakfast this morning was when Gaz picked a fight with me in front of the waitress. I'm not even joking, that was genuinely the best part. The worst part was when I had to eat the steaming pile of crap they put in front of me, followed closely by the time they then expected me to pay for it.

I can’t help but wonder whether Vanilla just decided to mimic Niko in order to guarantee its success. In fact, my elder daughter said to me, “There used to be another cafe here that we went to lots, where has it gone?” but actually it’s just a carbon copy of that (better) cafe on the next corner. I’d like to see some stats around how many people actually come to Vanilla by mistake.

And it is a mistake.

Because there were nine hundred people in the cafe (sorry, lounge) and ham wasn’t listed as an extra I just ordered eggs benedict with avocado and cursed the lack of hash browns. Gaz argued with the waitress because she was too stupid to understand what he meant when he said “Is the bacon and egg sandwich cooked fresh or reheated?” and then she was wrong anyway, because it was obviously reheated. He had the kind of face he usually saves for the times I ask him to stop playing Skyrim for a few minutes.


It was deceptive in its presentation. The eggs looked full and bouncy and the ham was nicely browned (though unfortunately, so was the avocado) and it was served on a groovy curved plate.

English Muffins

Maybe it was because it’s the last day of a long weekend, but the muffins were stale and even toasting them couldn’t hide that fact.

Hash brown



The outer of my avocado had a reasonable layer of brown attached to it. Someone had obviously left it lying around in the kitchen? The small amount I managed to salvage was quite good.


The ham is all that saved this breakfast from being chucked at someone. There was lots of it and it was the only part of my meal that was actually served hot.


They’re runny, but not in the “my adult parts feel funny” way – just in the regular “not actually cooked” way. Egg white slimed its way off the muffins and then underneath the muffins and served only to make everything a little bit damp. The photo is inaccurate too – these eggs were pale and sickly looking.


My Worst Benedict Ever was $18 including the avocado. Considering I pay about that much as a ‘poached eggs plus all these sides’, including hash browns, I felt seriously miffed.

The cakes looked delicious, but I didn’t feel like trying them by the end of it all.

Vanilla Lounge and Cakes Oakleigh small kok

Especially not this one

Vanilla Cakes and Lounge on Urbanspoon

Anna Spargo-Ryan

About Anna Spargo-Ryan

I'm Anna and by day I am a digital strategist, running around town strategising heaps of digitals. By night and occasionally morning, I eat things, write things, berate my children, walk my dogs and hug my chocolate. Find me on Twitter | Get some digital


  1. janine

    judging your breakfast. Laugh out loud even your names a joke, i mean i dont mind vanilla some times its good sometimes its bad, but you had to eat a steaming pile of crap….really and you call yourself an author haha you keep eating your chocolate darl.

    • Anna Spargo-Ryan

      Hi Janine! Thanks for your insightful comment.

      I’ve since been back to Vanilla (not for breakfast, but for hot chocolates and canoli) and had a much better experience, comments about which you’ll find elsewhere. I’m fairly sure the pictures in this review speak for themselves. That doesn’t mean they’re indicative of every meal served at Vanilla – perhaps this was an off day.

      Now, I don’t call myself an author, so maybe we both have something to go away and think about.

      • Shane

        Harsh review. Truth be told, most people use the place as a catch up venue. Coffee and cake is incidental. As for food, it’s pitched at non Greeks. most will eat at (their own) mum’s round the corner, the rest will eat there coz they’re too lazy to go home to eat.