From computer geeks to tea geeks to coffee geeks, I find geeks rather interesting — there’s always something admirable about someone who’s curious and/or passionate about a certain subject to try to learn everything about it. At Haven, coffee and tea geeks run the show. My promising tea adventures earlier brought me back with N to try their all day breakfast menu in their beautifully decorated wooden and exposed brick interior. A piano even sits in the corner, inviting customers to break out some tunes.
We start with teas! Left is Marilyn ($6), which is watermelon, honey, lemon and cold brewed Mary Mary. This was a very refreshing drink perfect for hot summer days. There’s crushed fresh watermelon that gives the drink a delicious texture, while the Mary Mary, a tisane blend by Tippity of violet leaves, calendula, lavendar, rose, chamomile and peppermint, provides a calming floral flavour.
Right is Dragon, which is apple, honey and cold brewed milk oolong. I’m fairly certain the milk oolong is just oolong with milky notes, not like an oolong latte. In any case, the drink was also refreshing with the taste of fresh apples and the slight astringency from the oolong, which had a rounder (milkier?) flavour to its usual fruity notes.
This is Potato Latkes & Bacon ($16.50) with two poached eggs, watercress and burnt butter sage.
Latkes are are Jewish potato pancakes. I love rosti and most things potato so was keen to try them. Here, they’re something between a hashbrown and a potato chip. Like a thicker version of a kettle cooked potato chip, this was super tasty — crispy and chewy in equal measure. The bacon, here, is also just how I like it — juicy. I’m weary of ordering bacon dishes at cafes; while I love juicy bacon, I’m not a fan of burnt and chewy bacon. While the dish was tasty overall, poached eggs really aren’t their strength — neither of my eggs were oozy as you’d expect of a poached egg. The innards of the top were gooey (though still erring on the side of overcooked), the one sandwiched between the two latkes was completely cooked through from the residual heat of the bacon.
The service at Haven is top notch — attentive without being intrusive. Their food is tasty, even if a little rough around the edges, but that’s all right — they excel at tea and coffee.
Haven is located at 30 – 34 Chalmers St, Surry Hills NSW 2010.