Located on the border of Carlton North and Brunswick East, North Carlton Canteen is bringing some much-needed cafe cheer to an otherwise unmanned Melbourne strip.

Inside or out, lounging on the banquette or perched at the window overlooking the street, you will experience an enjoyable repast by way of decent coffee and an appealing menu.

Pumpkin and fetta fritters served with tahini, yoghurt, poached free-range eggs and rocket seem to be one of the more popular breakfast options. Other tempting dishes include omelette with asparagus, baby peas and sheep’s cheese, or for the sweet tooth, banana bread pancakes with fresh strawberries, whipped yoghurt and pistachio praline. The house toastie, with its basic but oh-so-effective premise of ham, tomato, Swiss cheese and Dijon crème fraiche, is the perfect fix for those in need of a Sunday morning pick-me-up.

Lunch offerings are just as enticing, with a wagyu burger on brioche bun, house-made pappardelle with creamy artichoke and an assortment of paninis.

But it’s NCC’s takeaway picnic boxes that give the place its edge. With prices starting at $30 – which will get you two paninis, two sweet treats and two bottled drinks – these portable spreads allow diners the chance to enjoy the cafe’s pleasures, even from afar.

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Updated: June 17th, 2020

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