Cafe and Melbourne, these two are intertwine! You can’t do but understand how both cafe and Melbourne relates to each other, from their lifestyle, culture and also their history. If you would to make a choice or a survey, Melbourne can definitely be deserving of the title “City of Cafe”! Without even touching on the food wise yet, this city is a one that is famed of their coffee, from the sustained farming on the beans to the cup of coffee that can be found in the numerous cafes found in town. One of the most famed are the Seven Seeds Speciality Roasters which many cafes uses. Another is the laid back culture, Melbourne definitely isn’t fast paced and for the rush, in fact, these people would find it boring. Many of these unique, special cafe are found in hidden alleys and off the bustling streets, perfect for the laid back morning or afternoon. It also represents some adventure in finding the perfect one for each other. After some research, some of them really interest me! On this particular day I had actually wanted to visit Hardware Societe which was really top of my list but after waking up late the queue was really long. However another surprise lies in wait thereafter.
A short stroll away was Manchester Press, another one on my bucketlist in Melbourne. A press room? This cafe venue was once occupied by a printing press in the past and now all you get are great food, great coffee while surrounded by all the early goers whom come for them. Definitely this place are famed for their brew and also their bagels, homemade and topped with all sorts of topping. From sweet to savoury, there would definitely be something for you. A little tucked into the neighbourhood, it sure needs some finding before you will be greeted by the huge nice streets arts on the alley and also the people waiting outside. I arrived shortly after 11 and there was a wait needed for a table, your name would be taken down by the waitress.
The surrounding outside the cafe was vibrant and great, together with the artistic wall art, you could definitely spend some of that time taking many many pictures. For a cafe, such laid back, unique environment are great. Manchester Press is always packed and popular with the locals, either on the relaxing weekends or getting a coffee to go for work. The cafe was crowded and bustling, thankfully the wait outside wasn’t that long. Some of the people outside were waiting for food to go and also coffee, which the staff brought out when it’s ready.
Tall ceilings, nice white brick facade on the inside with high square windows that is barricaded with bars, it sure fell chill and the vibes were imploring. Together with the metal hung lights from the roof shinning on those large wooden shared tables and also other smaller ones too. It felt warm and inviting. As mentioned previously, those wine bottles that are filled with water are left on the table along with glasses, this really fits the decor in the cafe as well. Together with a little flower, it looks engaging. The bar always look busy with the barista filling beans and making coffee after coffee that fills the whole place with amazing smell of caffeine among the chatter.
I was seated at a little table along one of the walls and immediately presented with the menus, however I already know what I had in mind long before coming here. Furthermore upon the recommendation of the waitress, I knew I am there. Here are pictures of the menu. Options here at Manchester Press are limited to a few choices but they never really go wrong on it. It revolves along the bagel route as they are famous for. Besides the menus there are various bakes daily that could be found on the counter. For drinks wise, we went for a Long Black and also a Latte, the Black came robust and a hint of sourness too. It certainly packs huge punch and flavour. While the Latte arrived with a leaf drawn on it. I certainly like the how the foam stays even after the coffee was drank halfway. Both came at 4 AUD. I’m sorry I don’t really know how to describe coffee, even though if you have followed me you probably knows that I own a nespresso machine and like them with milk and without sugar.
For food wise, without doubt, the first one that I ordered was the Pulled Pork Bagel! No matter what this is the dish to order if you are ever here at Manchester Press. This is the dish that raved the online review community and also by the waitress, it’s also the one that makes me wanna come here and try it out. It cost 16 AUD, what you get was a freshly baked bagel topped with poppy seeds, sliced in half. It was then reconstructed but in the middle it was full of pulled pork that was roasted for more than 14 hours!!! It is then dipped in the bbq sauce that came with it. Then right in the middle of the bagel at the top, they put their freshly made slaw of purple cabbage. All bagels came with pickle and also pretzels on the side. The portion is really huge and the pulled pork really came in mass. I really like the tender, close to melt in your mouth pork that is really well seasoned, together with the bagel to soak up all this sinfulness. However, the dish is really on the heavy side and with the bbq sauce it will get a little too much when you are close to finishing the meal. Thankfully the crunchy, slightly tangy slaw which is match for this dish. If you should definitely try having the bagel and meat together with the pretzels, it really elevates into something different! A must order here.
We decide to order 2 meals for us to share, given that I am clueless on what’s next, the waitress recommended me the Grilled Chirizo! I’m in for it! This dish cost 14.50 AUD, it is slight different, being a open faced bagels, it is topped with spanish chirizo, tomato, cheese and lastly being topped with a tomato relish. This is a lighter dish in comparison. However I didn’t like the dish and find it to be a failure. It came really cold and hard for my liking, seemingly like a cold stale sandwich. The white bagel this time around also feels hard. Instead I would recommend them to make it with poached eggs and sauteed spinach on the bagel before being topped with thinly sliced spanish chirizo and finally flamed torch the chirizo as it release the spicy salty flavour over the eggs and bagels. Instead now it just feels like a spicy sausage.
Hidden on Rankins Lane, Manchester Press is open from 7am till 5pm on weekdays and from 9am on weekends. Despite my short stay here I really like the vibes and energy I felt in this cafe, the food and drinks are pretty good, right in the heart of the city. Given that it should be quieter in the afternoon, I would love to spend my time here with a book or perhaps doing some writing over a hot coffee. Have you guys been here? I certainly hope you guys enjoyed this, let me know how you think?