Hammer & Tong at Brunswick St, Fitzroy.
My last brunch spot after a skiing trip was at Hammer & Tong. Still trending on the Melbourne’s top 10 eating list, this place sports your usual Fitzroy vibe with a simple fit out and hipster dressed crew. As Hammer & Tong was the brainchild of a ex-Vue de Monde chef, my expectations were rather high. Or if you prefer, astronomical.
My first dish was Hammer & Tong’s classic Soft Shell Crab burger ($14).
Crispy, with a slight hint of roe between this fluffy bun, it was no surprise that the Soft Shell Crab burger is an instant hit among diners. It was not because it was unusual, but rather, the combination is a no-brainer. Who hate deep fried stuff between buns!? Pair that with some mayo and refreshing coleslaw, it was just sensational. to The biggest merit is the deep fried crab which was not dripping in oil! For $14 bucks though, it was a microscopic meal which means more food required, so I ordered the zucchini and corn fritters ($18) to my meal.
At Hammer & Tong, the fritters were actually crisp unlike the one I had at Mart 130 before! With one poached egg to merry the lot with the avocado, parmesan and homemade tomato chutney, it was actually a pretty good eat. BUT, it was again, another microscopic meal.
XL on the other hand ordered the ramen. Translucent onsen egg, mushrooms, bacon, spring onions on a bacon dashi base. The intent here was clear from start to end. Hammer & Tong's use of bacon not only provided a saltiness to the dish, but at the same time a sense of smokiness. A truly unusual dish, but with two bacon elements together, it felt too salty for my liking. But for an brunch place, it was a good attempt.
Breakfast Ramen; 62c hens egg, bacon, oyster mushroom, spring onion, bacon dashi
At Hammer & Tong, the menu is creative with unique ingredients making their way to the menu. Soft shell crab, ramen, and duck eggs to mention a few. But at the end of the day, this place still presents brunch at a level already available in town. Least to say, brunch here was satisfying. My biggest dislike though were the microscopic serves. Without two meals, you go home feeling half the man you were before you walked in. If I had to queue to get in (most did) which was probably gonna be very long at peak hours, I’d be gutted to be served that a burger that pathetic size. Yay or Nay? Yay, but with caution.
Looking for Brunch? Check out my Melbourne Brunches in 2014