A Very Melbourne Brunch at Top Paddock
There has got to be something special about a cafe if it can get you out of bed at 9.30am on a Sunday morning, let alone one that makes you wait around for 30 minutes in the rain for a table. It would need to offer a breakfast menu unlike any other. Luckily, that is exactly what Top Paddock brings to the breakfast bar: a delightfully different menu with dazzling service to boot.
Sitting quietly on Church Street just before the bridge, Top Paddock is hardly situated in a buzzing cafe hotspot. But as you walk ever closer you’ll begin to sense the excitement exuding from eagerly waiting patrons. You’ll feel it escaping yourself while you make your way through the entrance to place your name on the waiting list. Oh yes, there’s a waiting list. Fortunate patrons might wait a short and sweet 20 minutes while others might be standing around nursing a takeaway coffee closer to the 40 minute mark. Don’t be disheartened if you find yourself holding the shorter end of the stick - there’s a good reason people like myself find themselves braving the rain at an ungodly hour on a Sunday morning.
Your feet may tire, your tummy might grumble and your patience might begin to run dry as you watch contented patrons gleefully indulging in their heavenly breakfasts through the windows. But fear not, your face will light up as you hear your name called. Once seated at an elusive table, eyes scrolling excitedly across the menu, you’ll be grateful that you never lost hope. You'll be internally thanking yourself for patience when you lay your eyes upon your plate, and all will be blissfully forgotten after your first bite.
With a menu as extensive as Top Paddock's, it can be challenging to make any choice, but there are some obvious favourites to help you on your way.
As a small child, my mother would tell me that a sponge cake is one of the most difficult sweets to bake. As a young girl of 6 or 7 I’d look up at with surprise, certain that a vanilla slice or a cheesecake loaded with toppings would be far more challenging than anything so simple as a sponge. But with one essential element, and no simple ways to correct a misstep, achieving a perfectly light and delicate consistency is among some of the most challenging tasks in baking. But Top Paddock gets it right. While a long way from a simple cream and jam sponge, the blueberry and ricotta hotcake is a prime example of the perfect sponge centre with a delicious crispy exterior. With a blueberry and ricotta filling and a sprinkling of raspberries, strawberries, seeds and flowers to top it off, the Top Paddock hotcake is what you’d have if you crossed grandma’s baked sponge with a hefty dash of fairy dust.
Delightfully delectable as the tasty hotcake is, if it’s savoury you're after then Top Paddock has you covered. The all-encompassing Top Paddock breakfast breathes new life in the traditional ‘big brekky’ with salty chorizo sausage, pickled red onion, peppers, crispy bacon, poached eggs and relish laid upon the all-essential toast.
Whether you fancy a sweet start to your day or a savoury ensemble to wake you up, you’ll be lost for choice with the many appealing options on offer. Open Mon - Fri from 7am-4pm and Sat - Sun from 8am-4pm, Top Paddock will leave a taste in your mouth that you’ll not soon forget.
Where: 658 Church St, Richmond VIC 3121
Contact: 03 9429 4332
Mon - Fri: 7am-4pm
Sat - Sun: 8am-4pm