A place with aspirations out east
SET UP & SITE:
A year or two ago, I went to a cafe called Rosebank, which was and maybe still is a super-cool, hip even, high-end cafe of great food kerplunked in the middle of deepest industrial West Auckland. It was the physical embodiment of culinary cognitive distance. Clearly it’s a growing genre, though, because recently I found myself driving to the centre of deepest industrial East Auckland for brunch at a similarly flashy place, called Woolfy’s. Chairs were an elegant and varied combination of leather, wood and metal. The feel of the place was modern eclectic. In both cases, the location no doubt offers competitive rents while also being close to large, well-off suburban residential areas — in this case, the newish subdivisions of Flat Bush, Dannemora and Botany Downs.
SUSTENANCE & SWILL:
The menu is about to undergo a refurbishment, the extent of which was not confirmed at press time, but on our visit it had a reasonably conventional feel, with a few twists. There’s nothing wrong with convention — simplicity done well is the bedrock of all good eating places — and Woolfy’s did good convention. The scrambled eggs ($15.50) was a big and fantastically colourful pile of contrasts and textures on sourdough, with Sichuan chilli jam, spring onions and fried shallots. I added streaky bacon ($4) to provide it with a base and heft that would otherwise have been absent. It was a significant breakfast in every sense. The omelette florentine ($18) also came with chilli as standard, along with chorizo, parmesan and spinach, all served with an ample slice of sourdough. Again, it was a big serving. It was fine. The coffee, Kokako, was a masterpiece, a centrepiece, as it needs to be at a place like this, a place with aspirations. If the quality of the coffee and the quality of the fit-out aren’t there, you’ve got a problem. As a cafe proprietor, this needs to be your baseline.
Service was sharp, friendly and engaged. A water carafe was delivered and poured for us on arrival. We were there with preschoolers, so our time was limited and when we asked for an extra minute to make our food decision we genuinely meant another minute — and that was noted and abided by. We wanted for nothing. Greg Bruce
SERVICE & OTHER STUFF:
Woolfy’s 5 Cryers Rd, East Tamaki Ph: ( 09) 280 1585 Open: Monday to Friday, 7am to 4pm; Weekends, 8am-3.30pm We spent: $65.30 for two adults, two children.