Big, bold flavours dominate at this Brisbane cafe, but not all dishes hit the mark, writes Anooska Tucker-Evans.
Big, bold flavours dominate at this Brisbane cafe, but not all dishes hit the mark, writes Anooska Tucker-Evans.

'The fritters were denser than a reality TV contestant'

Brisbane's Alcove Cafe and Deli just celebrated its eighth birthday.

With hospitality years like dog years, thanks to the fickle and mercurial nature of the industry, that's almost a lifetime for the cottage cafe in the suburban hub of Wilston Village.

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While you could forgive owners Sep Marchitto and Fergus Parker for being a little jaded - or purely exhausted - they welcome guests with vigour during our Saturday-morning visit. Their

expertise, however, is put to the test with the footpath eatery as busy as the JobSeeker line at Centrelink.

Alcove Cafe and Deli in Wilston has become a neighbourhood favourite with patrons flocking to the eatery on weekends. Picture: Mark Cranitch.
Alcove Cafe and Deli in Wilston has become a neighbourhood favourite with patrons flocking to the eatery on weekends. Picture: Mark Cranitch.

Tables spill in front of the ice creamery next door, making the wait for food substantial and the ability to wave down a server challenging. A COVID-safe ordering system allows guests to order and pay for their meals online using a QR code on their phone. But not all paper-menu items are on the site, so ordering at the counter can be easier.

As for the all-day menu, expect a modern offering, running from wild-berry bread and butter pudding to Italian eggs, huevos rancheros and a nourish bowl.

Roast pumpkin fritters ($19 or $23.90 with bacon) deliver plenty of flavour with toppings of kasundi and pesto, but the fritters' chickpea base makes them more dense than a contestant on Bachelor in Paradise.

The roast pumpkin and chickpea fritters at Alcove. Picture: Mark Cranitch.
The roast pumpkin and chickpea fritters at Alcove. Picture: Mark Cranitch.

Also as heavy as my thighs during lockdown is the roti at the base of the breakfast dahl special ($22.90). Had it just been laid to the side rather than placed underneath, the Indian flatbread would have maintained its crispness, ready to scoop up the turmeric-stained lentil

mixture, freshened up with a tomato and onion salsa and yoghurt. It would have also enabled diners to tear it with their hands rather than having to poorly hack it up with the disposable bamboo cutlery provided. For value for money though, it can't be beaten with the dish also

including two runny-yolked eggs and chunks of subsiding beef brisket.

Coffee is a passion here, with the cafe using Veneziano beans in interesting options like the "one and one" where you get both an espresso and a flat white for just $6.50, or the "fire and ice" serving both a cold brew and a flat white for $7.

There are also iced drinks, smoothies and milkshakes, plus a small collection of popular bottle-shop wines and local beers.

Alcove is clearly a neighbourhood favourite, just prepare to be patient

 

ALCOVE CAFE AND DELI

92B Kedron Brook Rd, Wilston

3161 1591

alcovecafe.com.au

Open 6am-1pm daily

 

VERDICT

(Scores out of 10)

 

Food 7

Service 6.5

Ambience 7

Value 8

 

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Originally published as The cafe fritters were denser than a reality TV contestant