Pop quiz: What do you do when you come across a new and exciting café on social media?
Answer: Drop all plans and check it out.
And that is exactly what I did. I’m always on the hunt for new places to go and when I saw that Abacus was located conveniently on Chapel St., right by where I used to work, I messaged my boyfriend almost immediately and said “Here. We’re going here for brunch today.”
Abacus opened at the end of last year so it is still relatively new. The design of the place is very airy and open which I quite like and although there’s a decent amount of seating that the space allows, there was still a queue outside when we arrived. Thankfully we didn’t have to wait too long and were served rather promptly. The staff were bubbly and welcoming to any questions we had about the menu, which I love to see as I don’t like being made to feel like that person who is over-particular about certain food items.
As usual, we ordered some coffees to start and I got my normal cappuccino with almond milk. Right after taking my first sip my initial thought was “Woah, this tastes different”. It tasted sweeter than what I am used to but not as though someone had added sugar or sweetener to it. Curious, my boyfriend asked one of the waitresses about what type of almond milk they use and lo and behold, they make their own! She kindly brought over a little shot of their homemade almond milk for us to try on its own and it actually tasted pretty damn good. I did however much prefer it on its own than in the actual coffee itself.
For food, I chose the avocado, black beans, corn, goat’s fetta, pumpkin croquette, and egg (minus the fetta); and Seb ordered one of their specials which was a pork and multigrain loaf dish. My meal actually came out with extra goat’s fetta instead of no fetta but it wasn’t anything too tricky to take out. The food I got tasted very clean and healthy – but almost too clean. The egg was poached perfectly and the pumpkin croquettes were light and flavourful. However, it wasn’t enough to make me fall in love with it as the dish overall tasted a little plain. My opinion is that it was lacking in a sauce of some sort, perhaps a salsa. Maybe it was partially due to my having to remove the cheese but even so, the individual ingredients on my plate had nothing to tie it together and rather, just sat as individual food items on its own (apart from the croquettes). Because of this, I felt that it was almost too easy to make on my own at home and whenever I order a proper meal at brunch, I prefer to get something that I would not be able to put together myself. Seb on the other hand had a better experience with his meal and after nibbling on some to try I decided that there were probably other things on the menu that I would enjoy more if I were to make another visit.