5 Lire is a little café in North Melbourne. One thing that stood out was that they use quality ingredients and we all know that makes all the difference. Inspired by Italy, the brunch style menu is modern and memorable. For a small unassuming café the food definitely sings big flavours.
It’s a cute little space. They’ve made good use of the area. They have a little open kitchen down the back where you can see them putting the meals together. I always like watching the chefs cook and plate up, sort of like watching an artist at work.
Coffee first. They do a good coffee.
We had the Italian style croquet monsier, which was a brioche loaf toastie w Nduja (spicy sausage spread), stracchino cheese, fig jam, lyonnaise onions and a fried egg. It was super indulgent, each bite was delicious. The brioche was thick slices of buttery bread and the melted stracchino cheese was soft and creamy. I hadn’t had nduja before but it sort of tasted like spicy salami, it was delish. The onions were caramelised and the fig jam added a bit of sweetness. It had some micro herbs for greenery and thin strands of chilli that looked like saffron on top that added an extra spicy kick. And then if that wasn’t indulgent enough, there was a fried egg topped with black sea salt. This was a fantastic Italian rendition on a croquet monsieur. Loved it.
We were seated near the kitchen and it seemed that every order that went out included at least one serve of hotcakes. The hotcakes were flying out of the kitchen like hotcakes! So of course we ordered them too. And it quickly became obvious why they were ever so popular. They were heavenly hotcakes of deliciousness. The lightly coloured buttermilk ricotta hotcakes were light and fluffy. There was a wild chocolate cacao and orange crumble and a good amount of Nutella around the side. The crumb had heaps of texture. There was crunch, seeds, puffs, a few dried fruit bits and whole roasted hazelnuts. It had a rich chocolatey flavour, which had that rich dark chocolate cacao bitterness which was perfect to balance the sweetness. On top of the pancakes was a choc hazelnut Nutella inspired semi-freddo, which was cold, creamy and delicious. The dish was topped with fluffy strings of chocolate Persian fairy floss. This dish was absolutely sensational.
The food at 5 Lire is amazing, a great place for a tasty brunch. It’s a small space so you probably don’t want to go with a big group of people. The staff are friendly and the food is absolutely delicious.
I heart 5 Lire!
Address: 116 Errol Street, North Melbourne VIC 3051
Phone: 03 9329 2249
Trading Hours: Tue-Fri: 7am-4pm Sat-Sun: 8am-4am (closed Mondays)