I can’t tell you how much we have procrastinated over writing this review. It’s been in draft since December last year. Why? Well, it’s one of our absolute favourite cafés and there’s nothing like sitting down at your iMac, wondering if your photos and words will do it justice.
Black Seed opened its doors in November 2014, and in doing so, breathed some Brunswick café cool into Werribee’s up and coming Watton Street precinct. It’s small but perfectly formed, with exposed brick and an open kitchen that pumps out some surprisingly technical dishes for its relatively compact size.
You might know Black Seed best for their Freak-Shakes, as they are perfection! Freaky enough to brighten up the darkest Melbourne winter morning, but not so ridiculous that you walk away with Type A Diabetes and a bad toothache. For $12 they are pretty good value too, especially considering that the Chocolate Fudge Freak Shake (above) boasts a whole, beautifully squidgy chocolate brownie and a swirl of Persian fairy floss.
The menu is modern Australian with a subtle Middle Eastern influence. The first dish I ever tried there, the Baked Eggs Shanklish ($18.50), is still the best version I have had, and those terrific sweet, spicy flavours are incorporated into some of the newer offerings like the Calamari Salad and Cauliflower Fritters (above).
Along with those freak Shakes, Black Seed is known for its sweet treats and the various incarnations of the kids pancakes never fail to impress, emblazoned with brightly coloured Persian fairy floss, topped with an ice-cream cone, or drizzled in Nutella, they are big enough for an adult portion and we always end up taking some home for later. What I love here is that as much care and attention goes into the kids meals as the adults.
If you have some time up your sleeves, my recommendation from the sweeter side of the menu will always be the Raspberry Hot Cakes ($18) . Cooked from scratch, fresh for every order they are absolutely amazing. They are THAT dish that would cause some serious upset if it ever came off the menu.
If glorious Middle Eastern spices and decadent sweet nothings happen to not be your thing, then Black Seed has plenty of other options with a distinctly modern Australian flair. My favourite is the Smoked Salmon Bruschetta. Even this rather run of the mill breakfast staple is a feast for the eyes. Coconut Chia Pudding and Brioche French toast and a Big Breakfast ($20) round out the brunch menu and are joined by some fabulous looking burgers for lunch.
So who is behind this Western Suburbs meets Middle Eastern delight? Owner Walid came to Australia from Jordan and quickly ditched life as an Accountant to move into cafe ownership. After meeting his wife, Faye, he relocated from the Northern suburbs to Point Cook to be near her family, and seeing potential in up and coming Werribee, they opened Black Seed. It’s a family affair, with Walid’s son working front of house and Faye working weekends.
Mondays Black Seed is closed, and Faye and Walid take this time to explore the West, Fitzroy and Brunswick and draw their inspiration from some of the other fabulous cafes and restaurants that Melbourne has to offer. Their favourite Westie haunt is Laverton lovely Favor and Grace, and we cant say we blame him – you can check out our thoughts here.
Eat West are frequent visitors to Black Seed, so enjoy the photo gallery below! If you haven’t visited yet it is definitely one for the list – awesome food, great coffee and friendly service, in our opinion its one of the best cafes out West, and one of the anchors of Werribee’s bustling and thriving high street.