In a review Anna recently posted, she rightly showcased how spelling something differently in an attempt to look funky results in people thinking you have asparagus for a brain.  Unfortunately the trend continues on the northern side of Melbourne, but I liked Piccane Caffe enough to assume they weren't trying to be hip by spelling 'cafe' with two 'f's, but in fact actually meant that it was Piccante's coffee, but in Italian...because in Italian ‘caffe’ means coffee in. You think I'm educated and worldly now, don't you? That's because I am.

My cousin  actually dragged me to Piccante to perv on the wait staff and general hotness that frequents this place. Ladies, you won’t be disappointed. Our waiter was so delightful and handsome, and after filling us in on the details of the big night he once had where he found himself sleeping in the doorway of a shop, he entertained us with some sort of Irish jig before taking our coffee orders and a bit of our hearts.

The cafe, sorry – caffe, itself has some real character. Aside from the heavy metal music that was briefly playing at 9am, the walls are painted with some fun art, the wait staff are allowed to wear fedoras and there is a massive chess set placed on a windowsill that opens into the kitchen. Looking into it feels a bit like looking into Wonderland, although I can’t remember there being two cooks sweating up a storm in Wonderland. The atmosphere is warm and welcoming and the staff treat you like a mate coming to visit.

I ordered the Stack This – a poached egg, smoked salmon, cream cheese and dill on rosti. I was hesitant because although many a cafe promise a rosti, most deliver either a sloppy potato mess or a tough, paper thin potato Frisbee that I often stow away in my bag to use later in the day to entertain small children or stray dogs. It’s hard to get a decent rosti these days #firstworldproblems.

It took all of ten minutes for the meals to come out, and in that time another staff member came and had a chat to us about the weather and why we should order another coffee (which we did).

The rosti was perfect, the egg spot on and the salmon serving was deceiving generous. I don’t understand why the dish comes with cream cheese AND a serving of hollandaise on the side. My conclusion was that want me dead from cardiac arrest. Sooner rather than later, apparently.

Smoked salmon is a funny thing. It’s the only food in the entire world that I love more than my mother…when I first decide to order it. Then I get it, start eating and think to myself, ‘oh my god, I could eat this for every meal every day for the rest of my life!’ Then, about four mouthfuls later,I think , ‘urge, smoked salmon is so rich! Why do I order it?! God, I wish I had ordered bacon instead of salmon. And now it’s all weird because it’s mixed in with my egg. Ewww!’

Also, I don’t understand capers. I’m sure this will incite a hundred hate letters, but I don’t.

Something else I loved about this place was that all meals are available in half servings. I think this in itself reflects how delightfully accommodating and friendly the people and service are. Or it’s a tell tale sign that everyone in Fitzroy North are on a diet.

All in all I couldn’t have been happier with the dish. Parking around the area is a bit tough, and to be honest that’s the only thing (besides the music) that I can find that isn’t awesome about this place. If you feel like some welcoming service and a solid serving of non-pretentious food, then you’ve come to the right place.


Robyn Box

About Robyn Box

I’m Robyn – a typical 30-something Melbournian. Most of my time is taken up being a Government office drone and an apathetic TV watcher, but occasionally I break out of the excitement of everyday life to dress my cat up in humiliating costumes, buy my niece and nephews expensive gifts in the hopes they pin me as ‘best Aunty’, wear amazing shoes that render me cripple within 60 minutes and eat foods that will no doubt bring on early cardiac arrest. Then occasionally I write about it. Find me on Twitter

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