Living somewhere with minimal public transport, I do like to scout out local eats because not having to travel far always makes the day so much less tiring. When it comes to cafes, there’s only a handful around me that I regularly go back to so when Moss Bros Dessert & Brunch Cafe opened I was super keen to give it a go.
It’s located on the main strip of Rouse Hill Town Centre, a large space which once housed a chocolate cafe which was pretty much the only dessert option in the complex. Moss Bros is a much welcomed upgrade from the previous occupant though, just take a look at their stunning cake display and you’ll understand why.
But we’re here today more for brunch than for dessert, and the menu is equally as exciting, starting with an array of fruity ice crushes, perfect for the warmer summer months.
Even if you’re not much of a coffee drinker, the cubed ice latte which comes completely deconstructed (complete with coffee ice cubes!) is too much fun to miss. And there’s fun for everyone too- there’s a black variety which comes with water instead of milk, and the option to add a shot of flavoured syrup for those with sweet tooth.
So of course I went for the hazelnut syrup, which doesn’t quite fit completely on the wooden serving board but this only adds to the quirkiness of the presentation. The filled jug of milk seems a bit much at first, probably about double the amount of milk you’d find in your standard latte, but the coffee is quite strong so it actually strikes the perfect balance, the hazelnut syrup adding just the right amount of sweetness for me.
There’s an all day breakfast menu (a godsend for those lazy sleep-in weekends) complete with your usual brekky staples, as well as a brief lunch menu served from 11. It’s not a particularly extensive menu, but there are enough enticing options to cause indecision.
The corn fritters seem a popular choice, so we go along with that- two soft sweetcorn studded pancakes served alongside with the breakfast staples of smoked salmon, poached egg, avocado and salsa. It’s a busy affair, and whilst we’re not too sure what to think of the mass of parsley which is more of a side salad than a garnish, it is light and fresh, the kernels of fresh sweetcorn providing bursts of sweetness.
The Green Breakfast bowl is much more straight forward, and if you think green bowls are bland and boring, this one will be the one to change your mind, the miso dressing carrying much more flavour than you would think. In the bowl you’ll find an assortment of lightly cooked asparagus, broccolini, green beans and kale and it’s surprisingly the kale that was love most, the curly leaves of the kale giving plenty of surface area to hold the dressing.
There’s just enough dressing to leave you with greasy lips without leaving a pool of oil at the bottom of the bowl and a squeeze of lemon provides enough tanginess to cut through the heaviness of the oils. The side crunchy sourdough toast, two perfectly poached eggs and generous serve of avocado provide the additional sustenance needed to get you through the rest of the morning.
But if sustenance is what you’re looking for, the Shakshuka by Joo is the one for you.
It doesn’t look particularly large, but trust me, it’s a very satisfying serving. There’s plenty of flavour from the bacon, onion, garlic, tomato sauce and chorizo but the addition of spicy tabasco makes sure the flavour packs a punch. We also love the addition of stretchy colby and parmesan cheese on top for something different.
We don’t usually do dessert with brunch, but we’re swooning over their cake display and can’t help but to order the Pistachio Raspberry Cake, after spending a considerable amount of time choosing just one cake from the many on offer. It’s the beautiful shade of green that attracts us, and although looks can sometimes be deceiving we’re glad to report that it tastes just as good as it looks, the sweetness of the silky smooth pistachio mousse and slight tartness of the raspberry a perfect match.
And while we’re at it, we thought we’d try their delicious sounding waffles as well and go all out with the fittingly named Mega Calories Belgium Waffle which comes with a standard chocolate waffle, melted Belgium chocolate, ice cream, whipped cream, strawberry, banana, marshmallow, M&M’s, oreos and chocolate bar.
It comes to a total of approximately 2700kJ (650 calories) – of which about only 10% of this is from the waffle itself, the oreo and vanilla ice cream making up the majority of the energy content. It might be a little excessive, but it’s pretty amazing- and great for sharing too!