Cornersmith, Marickville (23 August 2015) - Revisit

Saturday, August 29, 2015

My brunch cravings often oscillate between (i) rustic and hearty, OR (ii) fresh and healthy. The pre-requisite for both is value, satiety and uniqueness.

Cornersmith's 'garden-on-a-plate' concept is deep in camp (ii). Unfortunately, small portions are no deterrent to a beehive of Inner West hipsters and aspiring dieters alike.

9:30am Sunday kick-off starts with a seriously smooth skim flat white. Cornersmith: 1, home Nespresso machine: 0.

Eyes wide open on the food - order wrong and you'll go home hungry. My mistake per initial 7/10 visit.

There's a $9 or $12 trap to get off first base. Start with eggs-on-toast or a egg-on-leaves. Stand-alone, this is an insult to any thrill seeker.

Real Intellectual Property (IP) is the blackboard 'add-ons' for $6. Choose fresh ham,  picked veggies or some type of green goodness.

In effect, think of chasing down a Mr Whippy's van only to eat soft-serve ice-cream without the choc-top. Mandatory, not optional.

Christina, a seasoned Melb-based bruncher is lured by the ham. She's ventured all this way for eggs, onion relish and ham on toast ....

Poached eggs with relish on sourdough with pasture raised ham - $9 + $6 
Fresh protein is dwarfed by the carbs. My interstate friend does not deserve to be down $15 a DIY staple. Relish feels a touch too sweet.

The dormant coeliac in me calls for the salad; one comparable in size to a local pub grub side dish.

Poached egg over breakfast salad - $12
Unsure the composition, but the leaves and herbs are complex. I love it. Is the value salvaged by a divine poach? No. Egg is left too long and the golden-ooze disappoints.

Chef apologises with 34 sesame seeds. This is not divisible by 5. Unacceptable.

For me, size trumps freshness in scoring and this bowl is soul value destructive. 3/10

Stomach cannot leave empty and I circle back on the Ploughman's Plate. Choice is largely based on a fascination with the word 'plough'.

Ploughman's Plate for two - snow peas, apple, ham, pickled veggies and some cheese - $30
Good produce should never be over-worked. This plate takes it one step too far. No excuse to serve chopped apple. Once again, the sesame seeds mark an apology.

Happy to concede to the home-feel of ham, chunky chutney and rustic sourdough. Pickles are way too salty and I feel this needs an egg.

Mr Ploughman's verdict is good balance but no magic. 7/10.

I do leave satisfied and land on 7/10. There is no disingenuous menu over-sell and I credit the Ploughman for saving the day.

My advice?
Provided you come to Cornersmith with acceptance (i) locally-picked produce is priced accordingly and (ii) chef's want you to lose wait, you'll feel right at home.

WIll I be returning?
Yes, the set dinner menu looks fascinating.

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