Housekeeping: we’ve spoken about High Streets before. This is High Street, Kew: one of the most notoriously congested and tram-heavy roads in the eastern suburbs. That means that when you go to lil boy blue - and you should – you might need to do some creative parking. 309 High Street is on the north side, which means your best bet is to come at it from the west and not try to fang a u-bolt anywhere. The south side is a clearway until 9am.
Not housekeeping: lil boy blue has that lovely rustic, communal table feel that I enjoy so much. Often it means I can strike up a conversation with everyone, no matter how good they are at avoiding eye contact. I had work to do and was quite selfish, spreading my papers and laptop around me, spilling juice everywhere and then dropping my fork in the lap of the man next to me, but no one complained. This is some kind of place, this is.
If you’re not in the practice of sitting near people who will irritate you, lil boy blue also has a rear area in which to be out of the way and I’m pretty sure it would definitely be okay if you took your yelling children in there. I didn’t, but that’s because I am a sane woman and I mostly go out for breakfast on my own.
The menu at lil boy blue is a work of art, offering such things as brioche bun filled with pulled pork shoulder, mustard pickles, truffle pecorino & wilted spinach and poached & crumbed eggs with trio of mushrooms, soldiers, salsa verde, pickled capsicum & goat’s curd. What! Luckily I had made a commitment to salmon before I got there, because had I not, I would still be weeping openly at my lack of decision making skills and the state of the world economy and truffle pecorino oh jesus.
I was happy to stick my face into this work of art: gravlax salmon with polenta chips, avocado puree, a poached egg and a creme fraiche, mustard and dill dressing. With dill, obviously. And some kind of leaf arrangement. Gravlax is salmon that has been cured in salt, sugar and dill, which makes it about infinity times more delicious than the smoked salmon you buy at Woolworths.
What a dish this was. For starters, I am on a ‘breakfast dishes’ kick lately. What I mean by that is that there are just so many breakfasteries that offer the same bollocks: either get some eggs and put some sides on them, or shut up and eat your bircher muesli. Places like lil boy blue are creating deliberate breakfast dishes. In the same way that you wouldn’t order “pasta with tomatoes, avocado, mushrooms and salami”, these cafe cum restaurants have concocted plates of food in this way because that’s how they taste the best. They do offer eggs + sides as well, if you’re not very adventurous or alternatively just a bit thick.
So on the food front, the polenta chips were only lightly seasoned, fluffy like a kind of fine sand meringue on the inside and crunchy on the outside, with a dusting of salty glory. Three chips may have been too many, but I used them to mop up all of that incredible dressing and runny yolk as though they were a kind of grainy absorbent towelette. The salmon was, as expected, melt-in-the-mouth goodness, and came in substantial salmon mountains. The avocado puree tasted like avocado, but then I guess that’s what happens when you put an avocado in a puree machine. It’s obvious that these ingredients are all soulmates in the swingers community of food.
Having sufficiently licked the plate, the staff thought they had not impressed me enough (they had) and bowled me over with their payment process, what with all the hugging and laughter and the caramel slice.
It goes without saying, then, that lil boy blue can come blow his horn at me any time he likes.