Having launched as a revamp of the original Deli that has been a business in Thebarton for a while, owners Zoi and Steve, with business partner Paul, have brought back to life this establishment with their fresh menu and spectacular renovation of the café.
Upon walking into the Deli’s beer garden area, I felt like I had been transported back to the open-air, all-natural vibes that most suburban cafes and restaurants in Melbourne are renowned for. Being a lover of street art, it was nice to see that the Deli was set against the backdrop of a now-abandoned lane with pretty graffiti splattered across the walls.
Adelaide Food Central was kindly invited to try the Deli’s brunch menu, where all food and drink was provided free of charge. And might I add, the portions of the food we tried today was very generous – something to keep in mind, should you see the need to grab a bite and would like to share with a small group of friends! We could feel the homemade-style love that the chefs put into making these foods.
First up was the Southern fried chicken with coleslaw, homemade bread and spiced stuffing. While the chicken itself may have been a tad salty, it complemented the sweetness from the coleslaw and the homemade bread. The chicken was cooked to a brilliant crisp, with a tender and juicy meaty layer underneath.
Next up, we had the Dukkah dusted calamari and chorizo salad. The chorizo had a smoky flavour and was well cooked. The calamari was cooked to perfection, which is truly an art that not a lot of businesses can get right. While it may have been a bland by itself, it worked better with a combination of the greens in the salad. The salad was super refreshing and had just the right amount of spices and greens.
The Gumbo with smoked bacon, chorizo, pickle and okra in a zingy tomato sauce with poached egg and homemade bread was probably one of the best Gumbos that we’ve had in Adelaide. The tomato sauce certainly has a tang to it, but it grows on you the more you consume the dish. While I preferred the dish with bread (and would have thus liked 2 slices of bread), I’m sure the dish would be well received by tomato lovers everywhere for its rich flavour. The bacon and chorizo were cooked in spicy herbs themselves, which added to the excitement of this lovely dish.
No brunch menu is complete without a meal that has avocado in it. So, of course I had to go for the option of smashed avocado with feta and chilli, because of my never-ending love for what is possibly the most delicious fruit out there. Having tried this dish from almost every café around the city of Adelaide (and still open to exploring more), I can safely say that the Deli’s version of smashed avocado has been added to my list of favourite places to get this delicious meal from. The avocado was super smooth and had a hint of spicy flavouring. It can easily be enjoyed either by itself or with the bread that it’s served on. The feta tasted a bit stronger that I am normally used to, but it worked well with this dish.
For those with a sweet tooth, may I recommend the hotcakes with honeycomb cream and banana. While it may look ordinary in presentation, the sweetness brought by the honeycomb cream and the freshness of the banana complemented the hot cakes beautifully. The icing sugar was sparingly used, which didn’t make this dish overpowering in its sugary taste.
The brunch menu at the Deli will set you back roughly $15-$20 which is average in price and well worth the money. The atmosphere at the Deli is extremely social and lively, with upbeat music and fantastic hospitality. The trip to the Western suburbs to try the Deli is definitely worth it.
Words by Fatema Sitabkhan
WHERE: 54A George St, Thebarton