Cuckoo Callay Review

What do you think when I say stripped paint + decrepit warehouse? Your ideal answer should be something along the lines of ‘my gosh, that is the perfect location to open up a café’, what would, in the past, have been met with a serious dose of cross-eyed, bewildered faces from friends and colleagues alike is now the celebrated it location if you want your share of the competitive café market. But if that is the case then how is one meant to distinguish themselves from the famed The Grounds of Alexandria and co.

Welcome to the world of Cuckoo Callay, a step back from the hustle and bustle of King Street, it is a place where optical illusions, punny jokes and a good sense of humour reign supreme. That aside, the food there is also highly commendable with generous servings, great Single Origin roast coffee and an extensive drinks menu that also includes alcoholic beverages from their bar menu when nighttime falls upon us.

If you’ve have been a long time reader of my blog then you will know that I have a fond appreciation for interior design and I am also a not-so-secret judger of toilets when I eat out. Unfortunately a lot of the thought and effort that goes into the smaller details goes unnoticed so if you’re swinging by Cuckoo Callay, take a minute to escape the rat race, grab a coffee, seat, a meal and go down the rabbit hole. I say that because the owners Ella and Ibby have drawn inspiration from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.

For my entree to the food, I thought I'd share with you all some pictures that I look there. I’m not going to ruin the fun by pointing out all the neat tricks so let me know what you think in the comments or better yet see it for yourself in person.

What do you guys think this looks like? 

Notice anything?

Work out the Cuckoo Callay story

Notice anything unusual?

Onto the food!!!

But first here's an aerial shot

Oolong tea $4

I was on a coffee diet so I opted for tea instead but I didn't keep my word and grabbed a cup of coffee before I left. Forgive me for I have sinned.

L: Nutella Shake $7
R: Orange, carrot and ginger juice $7

Great thickness to the shake, and yes it tasted like nutella so fans of that breakfast spread can rejoice because this drink stayed true to that choco-nutty taste that we have become so fond of. I would recommend that you pick a lighter meal if you were to order the shake because it can get quite heavy.  

Juices are always a great alternative, they are light and healthy provided that the right ingredients are used. I've mentioned this already several times but I always so that ginger is a flavour that really divides people over a meal, it's a taste that I've grown to like in moderation. I found that the juice wasn't so heavy on the carrot, which was definitely to my likely though I would have preferred a bigger ginger kick to cut through some of the sweetness of the orange.

Pumpkin Fritters, house cured salmon, poached egg, homemade basil pesto, and fresh heirloom tomatoes $17

Though overwhelming upon initial glance, the colourful combination of all things healthy is in fact a lighter meal than expected. Pumpkin fritters, despite their mushy texture in fact melt on the palette, the sweetness a good contrast to the mild saltiness of the cured salmon. Coupled with the juiciness of sun-dried tomatoes, delightfully aromatic pesto and poached egg, these elements add a novel touch to a classic meal. Highly recommended for the adventurous Breakfast-in-Sydney enthusiast.     

#Hashtag Browns- Crispy potato hash brown, poached egg, pea puree, avocado with bacon steak (or choice of house cured salmon, or grilled haloumi instead of bacon steak) $17

Sorry guys but #hashtags have jumped out of the instagram and twitter-sphere, any bets on when or if ever, blogger will adopt it? The hash brown is unfortunately hiding underneath the poached egg and overshadowed by the avocados but that's okay because all you need to do is focus on that lovely piece of bacon. I actually have a strange preference when it comes to my bacon - it is one of the foods that I'm super particular about. I don't like it when bacon is overcooked and crunchy because it is then dry but that problem often happens because the bacon comes in thin slices. Well a bacon steak is anything but that. This is a huge piece of bacon. If you're not a salt fan like me, it's best to eat the bacon together with the hash brown like it was intended. I personally like my hash browns (and chips as well) without the salt because I feel that that way I can truly appreciate the taste (yeah I'm weird like that), suffice to say this unsalted hash brown was amazing.  

Pulled duck, sautéed potatoes, green lentils, shaved asparagus, poached egg and spilled chilli jam $22

This was my meal and when I warned you guys about the huge servings, I wasn't kidding. I was so full after eating about half to this but truth be told, it was too good for me not to finish all of it. Loved the crunch of the lentils together with the asparagus and of course let's not forget the duck which was incredibly tender. Let's conclude on a three letter word: Y U M !!!

L:  Cucumber, carrot, Apple, Mint $7
R: Pulled Pork Baguette- 16 hours slow roasted pork shoulder served on baguette with whiskey doused rough cut apple sauce and coleslaw. $15

I really enjoyed the juice, it was super refreshing, this time the mint and carrot were more subtle. Also, how good does this baguette look with all the colour from the purple cabbage. I absolutely adore apples in savouries, the apple sauce was more of a sweet apple jam but it worked well when paired with the slightly spiced pull pork. Oh and yes for the record, the pull pork was super tender, definitely bang for buck with that 16hour cooking time. 

Callay's Brekkie Board- Double smoked ham, rosemary and lamb sausage, house cured salmon, two eggs, avocado, roasted heirloom tomatoes, and mushrooms with sourdough $21

Breakfast fit for a king especially one that can't make up their mind about what they want to order. 

That's The Way the Cookie Crumbles  $11
Death by chocolate, nothing more, nothing less. Warning, the chocolate cake comes out gooey fresh from the oven which means the ice-cream will melt quickly and it tastes so much better when the ice-cream is still in one piece. Think homemade lazy Sunday treats and an unforgiving relationship with food. I would recommend sharing this, unless desserts for dinner is your regular type of meal.

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