Bruin, a smart new diner from Iain Munro – the owner of Yarraville's The Cornershop and Wee Jeanie – opened a few weeks back and has injected a little urban energy into a quiet patch on Ferguson Street, Williamstown.
There's a very clean, timeless aesthetic to Munro's establishments and Bruin is no different. White-tiled walls, a bottle green coffee machine, black banquettes and pale wooden finishes are highlighted by complex metal chandeliers by Sally Mill, which throw pretty shadows across the bare walls, saving the need for artwork.
Munro has developed a share-only menu with flatbreads covered in various toppings – burnt eggplant, walnuts, pomegranate and shanklish for one – and share-plates that move from a fancy steamed tofu and crab dumpling (sold individually) in a cup of steaming duck broth, to watermelon and pumpkin seed salad with basil, and the more substantial sticky pork spareribs with house-made barbecue sauce. The mix of flavours is supported by an equally eclectic and clever wine list. This is clearly a step up from the cafe culture of Wee Jeanie but maintains the easy relaxed vibe that Munro instills in all his venues.
Only open at nights for now, there are plans for Bruin to open throughout the day in the months to come.
42 Ferguson Street, Williamstown
(03) 9397 4008
Tue to Sat 5.30pm–10.30pm