L’atelier by Monsieur Truffe – not only chocolate indulgance

I have been buying chocolate bars from Monsieur Truffe since his days at the Phraran market and his wares have always been solid delights. Initially, the decision to open a breakfast kitchen seemed like a distraction from what he was very good at, and I was questioning ‘why would you want to do that? why spoil a good thing?’. I have enjoyed the pastries and coffee at the other outlet on Smith St in Collingwood. So I figured it was time to check out the Lygon St venture.

On first glance, the plain frontage doesn’t give you much to appreciate. However, wander through the wooden door and the space opens out. Ample seating space in a converted warehouse which also houses their chocolate working contraptions. Simple finishings emphasize the high ceiling which allows for plenty of natural lighting.

Be sure to check out the boards for daily specials like cauliflower soup, foraged mushrooms and eggs in a pot.

The croque monsieur was nicely prepared and came served with salad leaves and cornichons. It wasn’t overly cheesed up, and wasn’t greasy. There was enough ham to give flavour and it worked well with the sourishness of the cornichons. Someone on urbanspoon had made a negative comment about the inclusion of leeks not being inventive in anyway. Well, I think for a classic dish like croque monsieur, there isn’t a need to re-invent something that is traditional and already good. This cost $16, sure more pricely than in Paris and simpler than Hardware Societe but it was pleasantly enjoyable, so I have no complaint.

The Full English Breakfast was more substantial with 2 poached eggs, 2 smaller sausages, a chunk of blood sausage and thick slices of bacon. The eggs were done very nicely and the blood sausage was very tastey although it was more meaty than spiced. The only downsides would be that the bread was under-toasted and the bacon was rather tough owing to the thickness.

The coffee was very nice, and I was tempted to try both chocolate drinks on the board but I was too full after my meal. One of the other diners on the shared table voiced that his chocolate drink was rather sweet despite the 70% chocolate, so this is one aspect of the drink that I will take note of on my next visit.

But don’t be in a rush to leave, take the time to browse through the plentiful options for chocolate bars ranging from the serious single origin to the friendly but tasty milk chocolates or dark chocolate with garnishing such as gooji berries, almonds or hazelnuts.

Overall, this is a really nice, relaxing place to come with friends for Sunday catch-ups. Food and drinks are reasonably priced, but why do coffee when you can go for wonderful hot chocolate?
L'atelier by Monsieur Truffe on Urbanspoon


About simplepalatesseriously

I am a neuroscience researcher in Melbourne, Australia with a keen interest in wines of the world.
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