The Grounds of Alexandria – review

image 2 Screenshot 2015-03-06 16.30.46 image 3

Building 7A No 2 Huntley St, Alexandria

I’m sure you are all aware of how amazing The Grounds of Alexandria are, but I couldn’t resist posting a glowing review anyway! I am lucky enough that I live in Waterloo so the café is actually in walking distance. I went on Sunday with my friend who had never been before and I think she fell in love with the spot – as do us all…

It is such a beautiful venue that it’s almost a little world of its own – I could close my eyes and easily be in Europe. It’s a treat for all senses – the eyes, nose and of course taste buds!

We arrived at 12pm so as expected we would have to wait an hour for our table – normally I’m quite an impatient person and would just forget it, but the surroundings are just as spectacular. We headed on over to the Salt Meats Cheese shop and boy was I in foodie heaven! Shelves stocked head to toe with my favourite Italian ingredients. We even got to try samples of the very best olives, chili chorizo and delicious jalapeno sauces. I recommend the ‘Harvest Olives’ – Sicilian olives with thyme, oregano, Spanish onion and capers; oh my lord they were to die for!

After our taste buds had finished salivating from the samples, we decided to cool down with a fresh lemonade and wander the grounds. The atmosphere was oozing with foodies, and everyone seemed to be enjoying their experience. You can’t walk past a food stall without your mouth-watering, especially the desserts – or maybe I’m just a sucker for sweets. The flower stall is exquisite too and of course don’t forget about Kevin Bacon the old pig.

We didn’t even realize an hour had past when the buzzer went off for our table. The staff were very friendly and recommended us dishes before we even had to ask. I ordered the ‘Grilled Crab Bruschetta’ and my friend ordered the ‘Smoked Chicken Salad’ with a side of ‘Polenta Chips’.

Our lunch came out fairly quickly considering how busy the café was and it definitely didn’t disappoint! My dish wasn’t what I was expecting – the crab looked more like tuna, but it was the best damn looking tuna I’d ever eaten. It was served on grilled seeded bread with smashed avo (my favourite), lime aioli and wild rocket. I would happily order this dish again tomorrow! All of the flavours were so perfectly thought out as each ingredient complemented each other. The crunch of the seeded bread with the pickled crab was divine, and the aioli had just the right amount of lime without over powering the dish.

I had a bite of my friends salad and the fennel dressing was incredibly tasty on the smoked chicken – she wolfed it down without any complaints, so I gathered it’s a yes from her too. Also if you haven’t had polenta chips yet I’m disappointed in you – they are too addictive to write about, so go on and enjoy some!

Our lovely afternoon ended with a naughty Nutella donut each as we sat in silence, licking our lips clean of chocolate and soaking up the sun.

I always come away from The Grounds feeling full/slightly in a food coma (from pure over indulgence) and totally inspired – if you want to spend half a day in foodie heaven then I recommend no other location more.

I rate The Grounds of Alexandria 5/5.

Happy eating, love Jem x

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