After 15 years, Theo Krambias is back at the site where he once ran Alfio's Caffe. Only this time, it's called CH James, in honour of Charles Henry James, a philanthropist who was active in the area circa 1880.
The cafe itself is wedged against a red-brick church, and the thin strip of land between them spills directly onto the footpath. It makes for a welcoming courtyard, especially in light of the edible garden spread across so many planter boxes. Inside, the walls are decorated with old-timey cart wheels and farming implements, nodding to the area's agricultural history.
The menu from chef Rodney Mom (ex-Rockpool) is short and sweet. There’s toast, porridge and the requisite hangover cure – a huge bacon, egg, potato, chickpea and chorizo dish called Only If You're Hungry.
Lunch (from 11am) is more savoury and more substantial, by way of pasta specials, vegetable tarts and slow-cooked proteins. Whatever you fancy, though, you're in good hands with Mom and his suppliers, which include Rooftop Honey, Mörk Chocolate and EDS Breads. Coffee is by Small Batch, with barista Miranda Rampton (ex-St Ali) working the machine most mornings.
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