Wednesday 3 March 2010

Each Peach - baby blocks and ice cream that rocks

UPDATE: - very sad to read that Each Peach has recently closed 
I am amazed that I have never before seen Each Peach during my frequent trips down Lygon St in East Brunswick but I am glad I have now found it. Last week I asked Yarrow to choose a child friendly place to go for morning tea with Sylvia on her birthday. The cafe had lots of kids toys, a cool retro high chair and her favourite ice cream ever (which I can easily say given that this is the only ice cream she has ever tasted).

The name was a sure sign that we would love it. Sylvia's Scottish gran and grandpa gave her Each Peach Pear Plum and she loves this book. Yarrow knew the owner Helen who is a baker and make the food she serves, apart from the sourdough which comes from Zeally Bay. It was just the place for Sylvia to have fun and for me to debrief with Yarrow about Sylvia's 12 month health check and get some common sense perspective after talking to the fool of a nurse.

While the cafe is kid friendly, there is also much to please adults. In the front room a quilt hangs on the wall made from vintage tea towels. I know my mother in law, who collects tea towels, would love it. There is also a large collection of Helen's cookbooks that are on display. If I ever visit alone, I would love to spend hours browsing through these.

We browsed the blackboard menu to make our orders and then settled in the back room (see top photo). It was as snug and cosy as the front room was bright and airy. We all loved the kiddie corner. There is also a backyard area where you can eat if you fancy some fresh air.

The back room had a doll's house, books, a stroller, table and chairs, stove, everything including the kitchen sink. The corner with the fireplace also had lots of wooden blocks for kids. I was excited by the retro green high chair. Sylvia sat in it while we ate. Later we asked Helen when it was made and she lifted the tray to show that someone had written that it was Gary's highchair from 1956.

Our drinks came first. Yarrow had his coffee in an elegant cup and saucer. We both also had a glass of Pink Drink. This was a juice of watermelon, beetroot and strawberry. I am still not sure of strawberries for Sylvia and asked for a substitute. Helen helpfully suggested blueberries. I loved the metal cups that the juice was served in because they remind me of summer picnics as a child. I shared some with Sylvia but she is still no whizz at drinking out of a cup and most of the pink drink I gave her made bright splotches on her white bib. At least she didn't try and put her fist in it.

I had been tempted to order the avocado and preserved lemon on toast but then Yarrow directed my attention to the panzella. Sylvia's favourite vegetables are tomato and cucumber (though the popularity of cucumber is waning) so I thought this would be something nice to share with her. She ate bits of vegetable while I ate most of the salad. It was a good way to get lots of vegies into a meal and had a tasty vinegary dressing although the bread was a bit soggy for my liking.

Once we had eaten, Sylvia was keen to play. Can you blame her with all those great toys! Yarrow had fun showing her how the toy Kenwood mixer worked. Sylvia also loved the cash register, showing her genetic heritage. I grew up in a family where we once set up a shopping centre in the cubby hut. When I told my sisters, they said how they still loved cash registers and Fran admitted she and her partner fight over who will use the self service register at the supermarket. (I avoid them as I am a luddite through and through.)

What I really loved about the outing was that there were other kids the same age as Sylvia and she had a lovely time playing with them. When the other mothers asked how old she was and we said it was her birthday today, they burst into a rendition of "Happy Birthday". Singing, sugar and self-indulgence are the stuff of birthdays. In that spirit, we also ordered some biscuits.

Yarrow chose an Anzac, Sylvia had a gingerbread dog and I had a chocolate puddle cookie. Yarrow loved his and Sylvia enjoyed her doggie but I found my cookie was a bit dry. It could have been renamed a chocolate drought cookie. So as I left I bought a snickerdoodle because I see these on blogs and have never tasted them. When I had it the next day at work, it was wonderfully buttery and cinnamony so I am ready to see my dry biscuit as an exception.

Yarrow had places to go and left while I paid our part of the meal. As I manoeuvred Sylvia's pram out the door, I noticed rhubarb vanilla ice cream in the on the blackboard in the window. Regular readers of this blog may have noticed that ice cream doesn't feature here often. I am not much of an ice cream fan. But rhubarb ice cream appealed. And it was Sylvia's birthday. The chocolate biscuit had been so disappointing and I had plenty of calories to burn as I walked there and back which was a good 45 minutes walk each way.

Any way I justified it, I had to have the ice cream. I went back inside and got two scoops - rhubarb and vanilla ice cream and organic chocolate sorbet - in a paper cup intending to take it away but ended up finding it easier to eat it in the front room. Both ice creams were superb! The rhubarb ice cream was packed with fruit and the chocolate sorbet was dark and intense and soft. I'm sorry I didn't get a photo.

Sylvia had never tasted ice cream before so I offered her a taste. This is how she often approaches new food: She closes her mouth and refuses to eat it but allows a little to linger on her lips. Then her little tongue flicks out to try it. If she likes it, which she often does, she opens her mouth for the spoon. She ate a little of the ice cream but screwed up her face and gave a little wriggle at it being so cold.

It was a lovely birthday outing for Sylvia's first birthday. I was asked if she knew what it was all about and I realised that for her, every day is all about Sylvia, so it was just another day. But she had fun. I will post about her cakes (all three of them) soon.

Each Peach
506 Lygon Street (near the corner of Albion Street)
East Brunswick 3056
tel: 03 9383 4529

UPDATE: - very sad to read that Each Peach has recently closed


  1. I love Each Peach! Cute photos Johanna.

  2. Each peach pear plum I spy Tom Thumb.....

    What a lovely place to visit! Happy Birthday to Sylvia. Give her a hug for me :)

  3. Thanks Lisa - maybe I am the last person to discover this place

    Thanks Jacqueline - you know the book! it is great isn't it?

  4. This place looks so lovely, I've been to Melbourne but it was five years ago. Liked the vibe though and the cool cafes! There seemed to be so many of them! We don't have any retro cafes with wanky furniture and mismatched cups where I'm coming from..

  5. Sounds like it has something for everyone! :) And good on you for getting the ice cream, it sounds like it was delicious!

  6. "Three bears out hunting,I spy... Baby Bunting!"

    That's one of my treasured picture books :) (I have a shelf at home for my favourites. Have you ever seen Drac and the Gremlin? Beautiful concept and illustrations.)

    My mum makes a wonderful apple rhubarb crumble - I'd love to try rhubarb in ice cream form!

  7. I love the way so many restaurants that you feature are like cozy homes with tables and regular furniture, as if you're eating in someone's living room. Sounds like a great lunch for Sylvia's first birthday--happy birthday to her! Send hugs her way for me. :) (And so funny that the birthday is the same as every other day--if only we were all attended to that well!)

  8. Thanks Goddess of Cake - we do have lots of cool retro cafes in Melbourne, even if we can get a bit pretentious about it - sounds like you need another visit

    Thanks Lorraine - was glad to remember how good icecream can be

    Thanks Hannah - I would love to browse your shelf of favourites - I still have a few of my own but I wish the covers hadn't fallen off my more favouritist ones

    Thanks Ricki - my mum used to tell us every day was kids days (when we asked why there was a mothers day but not a kids day) unfortunately I never appreciated it then - wish Sylvia could remember sitting in that cool high chair :-)


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