The Aquarium Bakery Cafe is my favourite local. I cannot say it is the best cafe in Melbourne but it is my ol’ faithful. I always seem to gravitate back to this place. It’s called this because surprisingly (or not!) it used to be an aquarium. So why bother changing the signage. People don’t like change much if they had a choice.
We all like to be comfortable and this place just is. Comfortable and reliable. Even the name is reliable. I’ve never had a bad coffee, bad food or bad service here. And sometimes, reliability is all we want.
It’s a place that welcomes you whether you are on your own or a big group. It’s also got a groovy shop next door that sells music in all formats along with some funky books. And they pass the water test too, without fail, every time.
I have never had to join a queue here to get a table. I don’t think a cafe is ever worth queuing for. There is always somewhere comparable or better around the corner in my opinion. Anyway, I am too old for queuing – it’s not comfortable when it’s raining and the ends are freezing off my toes and fingers.
The word “bakery” in their name is slightly misleading. There is no actual baking of bread on the premises but it is sourced daily from a local baker. Apart from the fresh stuff, you can select from an assortment of woodfired day old loaves for $2.50. Perfect for toast, bruschetta and garlic bread.
They are open most of the year. Even in January when so many of the cafes are closed around them. Again, there’s that word again – reliability.
I do like experimenting and trying out new cafes but it’s so easy to be disappointed. And when I can’t be bothered with this, The Aquarium seems to be where I end up.
You can visit them at 382 High Street, Northcote.