With so many amazing cafes opening in the Western Suburbs, it takes a special something to make your mark. In moving home to the West from ritzy Armadale, experienced café owners Neil and Angie Wakefield have created just that. Grindstone Kitchen is a sanctuary in Hoppers Crossing where you can rest weary legs and recharge the soul with some incredible food and some of the best coffee you are likely to find out West. Oh, and you can get yourself a sweet fade at the same time too!
With a fine choice of beans (Code Black) and a fabulous menu full of house-made breads, French toast and ready-to-go healthy meals, Grindstone Kitchen brings sophisticated cool to a corner of the West that hasn’t always been known for quality dining, and in doing so offers stiff competition to some newly established favourites.
The vegan French toast is dense, moist deliciousness. Topped with tart fruit and a pistachio crumb, I actually didn’t know it was vegan until I chatted to Neil afterwards. Like many of the breads and sweet dishes on the menu, Grindstone Kitchen makes French toast in-house and the whether you eat dairy or not, I’d definitely suggest giving it a try.
Whilst Grindstone Kitchen has no kids menu, there are plenty of options to light up little faces. These pretty crumpets, topped with peaches and raspberries, are perfect for sharing and very reasonable at $14. The banana and raspberry-coconut breads, are also real crown pleasers. Priced at $6, they make a perfect sweet treat for a smaller appetite.
If coffee is not your thing (or like me by 2pm you are needing to calm your shaking hands!), give the Tumeric Latte a try. I’ll admit, I ordered it more for the photo op than any expected taste sensation, and I was surprised at how good it was. Grindstone Kitchen take their coffee, tea and other brews very seriously, and I’m told the Tumeric Latte has had a few incarnations to find the right method to produce a perfectly smooth and blended result. It’s a little different, yes, but it’s become my new favourite evening drink.
It’s not all sugar and spice however. Grindstone Kitchen has a huge range of cooked to order and take-away meals that will satisfy those who prefer a cleaner approach to their diet. I felt pretty smug eating the Gym Junkie bowl, super fresh and filling with poached chicken, spinach, sweet potato and avocado, it is great value and available pre-packaged for busy health nuts or post-weekend guilty dieters.
The Avo with a Twist is one of the nicest smashed avocado dishes we have tried. Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a light snack however; with sweet, firm baby tomato, mint, charred corn and quinoa, it makes a very satisfying breakfast or lunch and, again, is really reasonably priced.
Great food and coffee is nothing without great staff, and this is one area in which Grindstone Kitchen (and the adjacent Grindstone Barbers) really stands out. Neil, Angie and the team are fab. From carefully explaining to an inquisitive 6 year old how to make coffee, giving kids skateboards to sit on whilst having their hair cut, or helping a novice photographer with some tips and tricks, the personal attention, friendly service and genuine interest in customer feedback is something else.
If you haven’t been to Grindstone Kitchen for a sip, snip or a snack yet – then make sure you pop it at the top of your list. We are sure it will become a firm favourite.
If you are on Facebook or Instagram, it would be hard to miss the amazing photos that Grindstone Kitchen has on it’s feed, most of which have been taken by resident barista Benjamin Majdlik. Ben is a fine arts photographer and is currently trekking in Nepal, shooting for Lonely Planet. His work is absolutely amazing – make sure you follow him on Insta – https://www.instagram.com/benj_mmm
03 8714 3371