Monday, August 27, 2012

Giraffe Cafe

Location: 302 Little Lonsdale Street, Melbourne 3000
Phone: (03) 9640 0889
Cuisine: Coffee, Desserts

It's a Saturday night and we've just finished dinner early so we fire up Urbanspoon to see whether there are any dessert places in the vicinity. Giraffe Cafe comes up and after looking at the reviews and the photos, we decide to give it a shot.

The place can be hard to find - from the front entrance, it just looks like a little takeaway bakery or pastry shop. Weave your way past the counter into the dining area and you're in a whole new world.

The dining area is slightly eclectic and set up to mimic something of a indoor courtyard. Wooden slats run across one wall of the room with some smaller pieces of shelving to display a collection of random objects. There are wooden bookcases, mismatched chairs, a couch and even a tree right in the centre of the room.

The menu sports about 8-9 different desserts. Taking the advice of fellow critics, we order the creme brulee and the chocolate pudding.

creme brulee
The creme brulee comes out presented beautifully. The brulee itself is a nice caramelised brown, two soldiers of sweet brioche sit on the plate with a raspberry compote and a drizzle of chocolate. We dive for the brulee and are glad to hear the familiar crack as we break through the sugar.

That's where the excitement ends. The custard inside is eggy and overcooked. And that's not all. We hit the bottom and find liquid custard. The dessert is a bit of a disaster, and the only thing I can think of is that the custard has split when it was first made, and therefore has not set properly in the oven.

overcooked eggy custard with liquid custard at the base
Given the creme brulee is supposed to be the best dessert this place have, it is a total disappointment.

chocolate pudding
Still a little scarred by the creme brulee, we move onto the chocolate pudding. The pudding itself is rich, smooth and heavenly. But the deliciousness of the gooey chocolate pudding is let down by what seems to be a large scoop of cheap ice-cream that's already melting into the pudding as it hits our table. My first thought is that the ice-cream should have been served on the side, and we'd have paid more for decent ice-cream.

Despite all that, surely they can get a mocha right? I judge a good mocha by how much chocolate I can taste in it. And I wasn't overly impressed with this. The coffee was strong, but there was little to no chocolate flavour. If I had wanted something that tasted more like coffee, I would've ordered a cappuccino.

Not the best experience, and I'm certainly not expecting to return any time in the near future.

Overall Impression: 3.5/10
Giraffe Cafe on Urbanspoon


Anonymous said...

I'm sad giraffe cafe food wasn't impressive :( I used to go here often cos it was cute, too bad the food is inconsistent.

Anonymous said...

Giraffe is amazing! I really don't agree with your reviews. It depends on what you're looking for in the city. If they're charging you $20 for dessert then sure I'd expect a fair bit. You get what you pay for. Considering giraffe opens til late and is price very reasonably, you can tell by the shelves of books and games at the shop that its for city dwellers who want to hang out late at night. It's probably directed more towards Uni students.
I love this place, its cute and there's no pressure for you to eat your food and leave. Great relaxing time to sit back and relax on one of their couches. I'm pretty sure your not reviewing eat venue with their merits. Certainly hope no one lives by your posts, you seem to find a negative to everything.