Animal Orchestra, Carlton

I've said it before, but I'll say it again: baked-eggs-in-a-pan is the breakfast fad of 2007. And like all true fads, I'm tipping this one won't last. Which isn't good news for Animal Orchestra, 163 Grattan Street, Carlton, Tel +61 3 9349 4944. Baked-eggs-in-a-pan is all they serve (unless you count muesli and toast). But as baked eggs go, the flavours were good.

animal orchestra

My main objections to baked eggs are two. First, you sometimes get a slight tinny taste where the food has started to react with the iron of the pan. There were slight hints of this in my serve of eggs, beans and cheese today. Second, the dish is just slightly more annoying to eat than plain old eggs-on-toast. I can never decide whether to hold the toast and dunk it in the eggs, or to rip up bits of toast and sprinkle them through the dish like croutons. Call me picky.

I'm sure there will be baked-egg mavens who will disagree with my fad prediction. And I am quite happy to be proven wrong. But once you've experienced the tinny taste a couple of times, I can't see people going back for more. Maybe the secret is to use enamel pans?

If you like baked eggs, Animal Orchestra certainly has plenty to offer: bacon, tomato mushroom and cheese; potato, leek and shanklish; caramelised witlof and goat's cheese; smoked salmon, dill, capers and onions; and sardines and fetta.

The venue is quirky. Outside they have lots of little stools for Melbourne Uni types to perch on. Inside it looks like someone wallpapered the place with random magazine clippings, including a sprinkling of soft porn (or maybe it was art?).

13/20 "fully baked"


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