The cafe is located on Hardware lane just across from the ever-popular Hardware Societe. Upon entering the cafe, I was almost confused with a throng of people congesting the front area, that I thought that the cafe was puny. In fact, looking past the crowd, it is a very narrow and long space with seating beyond the counter. We sat at the very end of the long communal table with seating made from wood and kegs. Later, another pair were seated right next to us - both parties noted that it was very awkward as I felt as though I was in their breathing space.
The small space
They offer a small range of baked pastries and sandwiches at the front. I was too preoccupied with taking photos that I forgot to take some away.
They have a limited food and drink menu on recycled paper. We ordered a glass of Sangiovese each which was medium-bodied and slightly acidic on the tongue.
Ms J was after something light so she had an almond and olive oil muffin which looked boring but appearances can be deceiving - it was dense but incredibly delicious and nutty.
Almond & olive oil muffin
The brown rice was creamy and cooked in an onion broth. Topped with wonderfully silky foraged pine mushrooms, the quark was mild and slightly sour while the cress added a fresh tangy mint flavour to lighten the flavours of the dish. Although the serving was small and I was hungry within an hour again, I thought it was delicious. If the serving had been double the size, I would have been a very happy diner.
Brown rice with wild mushrooms
Silo by Joost - you can even see my friend & I in the reflection :)
Although they have a fantastic concept and actually follow through to the finest details, the prices are quite steep for what you get regardless of the high quality of food. The pair sitting next to us kept commenting on the price of the food in comparison to the portion sizes. So it's definitely not somewhere you go to for a food-coma inducing feed, but more for the quality of food, locally sourced produce and the waste free concept.
Silo by Joost
123 Hardware Lane
Melbourne VIC 3000
(03) 9600 0588
Will I return? Yes, the prices are higher than normal but I liked the food and it will be interesting to see the changing seasonal menus.