We had just watched ‘The Eagle Huntress’, a documentary showing at the MIFF about a Mongolian girl who defies tradition by becoming a master eagle hunter (a role traditionally reserved for males). The film had absolutely breath taking cinematography and the story it captured was equally moving – a girl with the courage, strength and passion to challenge gender stereotypes and a father’s unconditional support and love for his dear child.
It goes without saying we were on a high as we walked towards White Mojo in Melbourne CBD. The 20 minute wait for a table couldn’t dampen our (eagle) soaring spirits. The interior of the cafe is indeed bright white (as the name suggests) with geometric grey tiling which gives the place a bit more of a hip rather than warm feel. I was quietly hopeful that White Mojo would be able to rival Hardware Societe, a cafe just across the street which draws an irrationally large crowd most mornings.
The menu was appealling. I was immediately drawn to the cauliflower pannacotta served with scallop, pancetta and egg as it seemed like a master chef winning dish. But after a couple of hours of serious tear welling at the Forum Theatre, I felt like something more substantial. I ordered the salmon tartare with miso avocado, spicy mayonnaise, crisp bagel, dehydrated onions and 63 egg. My fellow MIFF enthusiast couldn’t resist ordering White Mojo’s most popular dish – the White Mojo Croissant Burger, a croissant filled with soft shell crab, chipotle mayonnaise and picked cucumber topped with a fried egg and the Matcha Latte.
I was pleasantly surprised when my dish arrived. Rather than a whole bagel, the dish is served with thin bagel slices. Cripsy yes, good texture contrast to the tartare yes, toasted no, favoursome no. I would humbly suggest bagel chips to enhance the dish. The salmon tartare was fresh, but the mayonnaise made the tartare quite rich. The dehydrated onion was also a little too pungent for me – I would have loved to taste more of the miso avocado.
The fried egg on the croissant burger looked very enticing. As I ate the dish with my eyes, my eating companion daintily worked her way through her burger (she has dainty hands and an equally dainty eating style) – she commented that the burger was tasty, but as rich as you would expect a soft shell crab croissant burger to be. Fair comment.
As a side note, Fran has been to the White Mojo in Balwyn and fully endorses the croissant burger…each to their own.
After the waiter cleared our plates, we eyed the mini doughnuts/cake doughnuts on display and debated briefly about whether I could fit a whole mini doughnut in my mouth. Let’s just say I didn’t take the bait when challenged.
As we walked away, we felt confident we would be raving about The Eagle Huntress and not White Mojo for the weeks to come.
If you are looking for a brunch/lunch place in the city that has a creative (but rich and slightly pricey) brunch menu and if you are up for a little wait, give White Mojo a shot. But not before watching The Eagle Huntress!!!