North Melbourne has become a hot spot for opening cafes in the last few years. It's very likely that you've been to the more popular ones like the beloved Auction Rooms on Errol street and the cosy Twenty & Six on Queensberry. Their popularity means it's often difficult to get a seat during peak hours, so it's a perfect chance to explore the quieter cafes that can be overlooked, when you're not looking.
Enter Elceed, a humble cafe converted from what was once a charming residence. It's decor retains a nostalgic feel of a bygone era. The luminance from hanging UFO shaped lights bounce off varnished tables and natural lighting douses the rest of the room in a warm shimmer.
Almost 3 years have passed since I first paid a visit to Elceed. I'm somewhat delighted to say their menu hasn't changed, save for the addition of a dedicated specials board. On one of the last warmer days of autumn I tuck into a double decker of corn fritters, crowned with roquette, salsa and a knob of pesto. Not the biggest fan of bacon, I request to have it swapped for some chorizo instead and they oblige. A poached egg is added for a charge, but I'm okay with it for reasons that have everything to do with final year studies and stress.
Coffee is by Coffee Supreme and I'm happy to say that the quality of their espressos have definitely improved, enough that I order a second latte to accompany my meal.
The fritters lack their characteristic crispy char, they always do here. Nonetheless the combination of avocado, corn, creamy yolk and tangy salsa tinged with the distinct bitterness of rocket leaves has always contented me and I do believe that that is what keeps me coming back when I do pass by - their consistency in delivering my golden combination for a dish of corn frittters.
It does looks small at first, but as soon as my next latte arrives I realise how full I really am but also how far determination can get me when I clear all food remnants from the plate. At $20.90 my dish is one of the pricier options but Elceed makes up for it in its charming qualities. Little to no queue times and openness to relax and linger a little longer can go a long way in guaranteeing an enjoyable brunch date.
610 Queensberry street
Tues - Fri 7.30am - 3pm
Saturday 8am - 3pm
Sunday 9am - 3pm