It's been possible to buy jaffles – traditionally the hero snack food for the lazy home chef – in Melbourne for some time now. For example, Bad Frankie in Fitzroy has been flogging them since opening last year, and it wasn't that long ago that Jafflechutes was flinging them off rooftops.
Melbourne’s latest toastie addition, Jaffle Jaffle, is capitalising on our undying love for the pressed sandwich.
Owners Marc Goldenfein and Clayton Thompson (the creator of Spudbar) know nostalgia, whether for fond childhood memories or 2am snacks, is at the core of people’s relationship to the snack food. “Everybody loves jaffles. Whenever we talked about them, people’s eyes lit up,” Goldenfein says.
Wedged between two golden-brown chunks of crispy bread, produced specifically for Jaffle Jaffle in a range of options by Empire bakery, are jaffle fillings that range from simple to decadent.
For the traditionalists there’s the 3 Cheese (swiss, cheddar and mozzarella) and The Grand Toastie (Virginia ham, cheddar and roma tomatoes).
But there is a bunch of options for the more adventurous. Take the China Town: succulent barbeque pork topped with sweet hoisin sauce; or if the hollow spot in your stomach really needs filling, the NY Deli: layers of pastrami, sauerkraut and pickles.
The sleek bamboo fit-out comes from local team Foong + Sormann with the menu design coming from Collingwood studio Jac in a Box. And if the jaffles here look unusual, they are. Thompson has sourced the jaffle press from Germany and created the plate’s rectangular design himself. “We’re redefining the jaffle. No one else has gone to the effort to engineer and create this kind of plate,” says Thompson. So, if one jaffle isn’t enough, double up and get two: a jaffle jaffle.
Faithful jaffle-ists take note: Goldenfein and Thompson are collaborating with the public in the near future to find new recipes to add to the menu.
There are sweet, juicy pickles or chips to have on the side, and shakes. Coffee is from Melbourne roasters Niccolo. Don't forget to try one of the puff-pastry dessert jaffles, which run from traditional apple pie to fig and honey.
567 Collins Street, Melbourne
Mon to Fri 7am–6pm