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“A little eccentric but worthwhile if you are a foodie (and vegetarian)”
Review of Lyrebird Cafe - CLOSED

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Lyrebird Cafe
Cuisines: Australian
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Darwin
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“A little eccentric but worthwhile if you are a foodie (and vegetarian)”
Reviewed March 23, 2013

I travel to Melbourne about 3 times a year and always visit the Lyrebird Cafe - for breakfast, mid-morning coffee, lunch or dinner. Every meal I have had there has been awesome - the scrambled smoked tofu breakfast makes me drool just to think of it! And if the chef has baked a cake you are in for another treat - he uses almond meal, fig jam, poached pears, ricotta ... yum. The owner/chef is definitely eccentric and the service can be slow but this is because practically everything is cooked fresh. The last lunch I had there he made a vegetarian quiche for me from scratch - I had to wait half an hour but I have never eaten a quiche so delicious either. So if you are comfortable with a little eccentricity, and really want tasty, fresh and food with difference this is the place for you! As of week or so ago the no children sign at the window table has been removed and the chef's partner has taken over the front-of-house (she is lovely and so not grumpy).

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Gerberas0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

16 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    6
    3
    0
    0
    7
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Melbourne, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Very disappointing”
Reviewed December 28, 2012

Having enjoyed a fantastic morning traipsing through the treetops at the treetop adventure course in Belgrave, our group of adults and older children were looking forward to an enjoyable lunch in the village. We stumbled across an inviting looking cafe and thought we'd give it a try. Alarm bells should have gone off when we were confronted with a sign telling us that no children were permitted to sit in the front window seats (were they going to scare off the young and fashionable crowd going to Puffing Billy???????). The following meal can only be described as a disaster. A hand written menu that was indecipherable, ridiculously slow and indifferent waiting staff who refused to acknowledge their mistake when they forgot one of the meals, meals that were delivered one at a time with about five minutes between each one, and a bar attendent w proved he had slipped upho was unaware of the difference between light beer (as in low alcohol) and light coloured (pale) beer. Finally, having finished our meal we went to pay with cards, only to find that, despite the VISA sign on the door, they would only accept cash. This is one of the worst experiences I have EVER had at a restaurant. Whether this shambles of a setup has something to do with the guaranteed trade that comes with proximity to Puffing Billy (thus not needing to make an effort to attract customers), or can simply be put down to inexperienced and incompetent management and staff I couldn't say. All I can say is that I would not recommend the Lyrebird cafe to anyone looking for an enjoyable meal in the country.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Sue V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Best pies and much more...”
Reviewed October 19, 2012

I too am a local and eat here regularly. It is one of the best restuarants in the area (with a couple of caveats). I often buy the pies here to take home and my daughter who lives in the country always asks me to bring a batch when I visit so she can freeze them). The pies are hand made, so there is some inconsistency, but they are coc full of ingredients and flavour. I highly recommend them.

I admit the service is not always the best, it is often a one man show. Busy times there are front of house staff, but lunch and breakfast are often just the owner/chef. His strength is in the kitchen and his meals are brilliant. But don't expect an identical meal every time, even if you order the same item. The chef uses fresh market produve which he buys himself and takes advantage of whatever is best at the market to make his dishes. His big breakfeast is the lsrgest and best (and cheapesr) in the area, but it wil be a bit different every time.

The chef does like to cook meat, including game, although will certainly do vegetarian on request. He also uses extra virgin olive oil liberally in some dishes, and it usually works very well. I agree that it's not always eady to read his handwritten blackboard menu if you are not used to his writing, so just ask if you are not sure. There are gems to be found there in my experience!

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Klosko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Lyrebird "pie" purchased from Supermarket”
Reviewed September 29, 2012

I haven't been to this "cafe" and never will.

I purchased a Lyrebird "Goat's Cheese and Vegetable Pie" from my local supermarket in Hawthorn. It was almost indescribably bad. Purporting to contain onions, sweet potato, butternut pumpkin, goat's cheese and good pastry ingredients (butter, flour, egg), it was largely filled with undercooked, watery pumpkin and was inedible. There wasn't even a hint of kumara (sweet potato) or onion, simply a bland, tasteless, stodgy mess of pumpkin of the most inferior quality.

Butter in the pastry? I think not. Goat's cheese? The small amount of cheese it contained was more akin to palate-sticking cream cheese.

I will certainly be telling my supermarket of my experience and hope that it disappears off their shelves.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Adrienne D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Beautiful food worth the wait”
Reviewed August 21, 2012

Having a fussy partner who will only indulge the finest of eateries with her presence has been both an inconvenience and a blessing to my inevitably grumbling stomach. This place falls into the former category as it has been a real find in our local area. Traipsing the breadth of Melbourne is no longer necessary to enjoy an outstanding meal. The soups drip with melt in your mouth flavor, like a warm home coming meal for a prodigal son. Pies are unique and devoid of the jelly wobble filler featured in most of its species. Fresh and handmade by an artisan with pride in his work. O.K. the staff may not be standing by to wipe the juice from your chin, and the chef may have a reputation for being rude but diversity stitches the fabric of the world. The chef works long and hard to ensure the integrity of his food and has strong views on some subjects. His cultural background may have something to do with this ethos. Highly recommended as one of my favorite local businesses. Get over yourself people and visit a restaurant to eat and experience a night out. Not for the faint of heart.

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank RCartz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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