Surveying the menu at Meet Gerard, it’s impossible to ignore the cockily named Best Roast Chicken Sandwich Ever. It’s a big call, but owners Mariella Traina (previous owner of Petersham’s The Counter) and friend Sarah McWilliam (former head chef at West Juliett) stands by the claim. There’s a secret stuffing mixture and surprise bursts of cranberry throughout.
The rest of the menu features similar twists on cafe staples, with favourites such as smashed avo elevated with house-pickled chilli and a confetti of yuzu sesame seeds. Free-range eggs are delivered straight from the farm gate in Wyong for a vegetarian take on the bacon-and-egg roll: haloumi, greens, blackened tomato relish and aioli. The traditional version is also on offer.
The same goes for the lunch menu, with finer details such as “heaps of crunchy vegetables, hummus and pickled cucumber” raising the salad sandwich stakes, while charred brussels sprouts and mapled yoghurt boost the slow-roasted pork salad.
Quality coffee is also a focus here. Traina and McWilliam serve a house blend designed by local roasters Coffee Alchemy, and rotating single origins for filtered brews.
Joiners Porter and Maple carried out Traina and McWilliam’s vision of keeping the design simple and clean (accented with some industrial bling) to create a relaxed meeting place.