C&J Melbourne Travels – Proud Mary

2013 has sure turned into a crazy year, I have lost count of the family and friends who have to come to visit. About 3 weeks ago Jack and his girlfriend Cindy from HK emailed me saying ‘We wanna come to Melbourne for a holiday what you think?’. It was a bit of a shock for me as I had no idea they had plans to travel and definitely not to Melbourne! But of course I welcomed them, I love taking and showing people around.

Proud Mary

Because C&J were only here for a week and I had work we only really had one whole day free to spend with them and that was the Sunday where I planned a day trip to take them to the Mornington Peninsula 🙂 Will be sharing our itinerary and other adventures with you shortly. But before we made our way down the Peninsula we had to have breakfast. They are probably the easiest people to travel and eat with hahaha because they gave me full control and trusted me! So pressure was on to take them to the best places!  Nearly without thinking I knew I wanted to take them to Proud Mary for breakfast.

Proud Mary

I’m sure most Melbournians would have visited or at least heard of Proud Mary. It is one of those long established cafes who do their coffee and food well, regardless what day of the week, there will always be long queues. Given that we went on a Sunday morning at 9:30am, we knew there was going to be a good half an hour wait. The lady at the front told us to go get takeaway and come back in half an hour, so I took C&J to another cafe for hot chocolate. We came back to Proud Mary’s with our takeaway  and was lead to our table. The waitress then said in a stern voice ‘Let me bin those for you’. It really startled us, because there was no signs that outside food wasn’t allowed and it was only hot chocolate. I told her nicely, ‘We’re nearly done with those, would you like us go finish it outside and come back?’. She simply replied, ‘No that’s fine let me bin them for you our hot chocolate is MUCH better’ and quickly took our half-finished hot chocolates from us. I can understand a cafe wouldn’t like outside drinks brought it and we would’ve happily thrown it away, it was more the tone of her voice and attitude that really put us off.

Latte house blend $3.5

Latte house blend $3.5

Definitely not a good start to breakfast, and we all ordered a drink as we always intended to. I ordered a latte in their house blend, they usually have the Ghostrider which is their seasonal house blend, however, had run out so had a different blend. I found it to be quite sour and acidic to taste and needed a good spoonful of panela sugar to balance out the flavours.

Magic $3.5

Magic $3.5

Mr Bao being a creature of habit, ordered his Magic which was a single origin from somewhere I’ve forgotten 😛 Once again though he found it to be very sour and slightly bitter towards the end, he prefers his coffees to be more fruity.

Cappuccino $3.5

Cappuccino $3.5

Jack ordered a Cappuccino and commented this was one of the best coffees he has had in a very long time, because the coffee in Hong Kong are often very watery and simply not as robust and brewed as well as ours in Melbourne.

Axl Rose Juice $7.5

Axl Rose Juice $7.5

Cindy doesn’t tolerate caffeine very well so ordered the Axl Rose juice which has orange, apple and strawberry. I really like the name and colour of the juice, she said that it was lovely and not too sweet because most places in HK will add sugar to their juices.

Frank n Beans $17.5

Frank n Beans $17.5

Remember how I said C&J are super easy, I basically ordered 4 breakfast dishes for us to share. The first was the Frank n Beans which was cannelli beans cooked in a tomato based sauce, topped with a pork and fennel sausage, poached egg and served with garlic fried sourdough. It was a warm and comforting dish and our favourite was the fried croutons which gave the dish some crunch.

Proud Mary1

I think the best way to tell whether a cafe is good, is to look at how well they can poach an egg 🙂

Potata Hash $18

Potata Hash $18

One of their signature breakfast dishes at Proud Mary is the Potato Hash where the potato is grated into shreds then made into a little cake and pan fried to give it that crunchiness on the outside but still soft inside. Since the last time I came they have replaced the thin cut bacon with the thick bacon steak! Which elevated the dish to another level 🙂

Crispy Pork Belly Sandwich $15

Crispy Pork Belly Sandwich $15

Another must order is the Crispy Pork Belly sandwich, it’s good that Proud Mary servers their menu all day so you don’t need to wait till 11am to get this ~ The sandwich is smeared in smoked paprika relish and aioli then slices of crispy pork belly, it may seem a little heavy for breakfast, but its so delicious. My only suggestion is it could have been a little more seasoned as I found the pork to be a slightly bland.

Ricotta Hotcakes $17.5

Ricotta Hotcakes $17.5

Different people come to Proud Mary for different reasons, some come for the coffee, some for the potato has but for me it’s for these RICOTTA HOTCAKES! These are still some of the best I have had in Melbourne. That day they were served with roasted stone fruit, yoghurt and blood orange ice-cream and cookies cream. C&J and Mr Bao found the roasted fruit and syrup a little sweet and because we had this last the ice-cream sort of melted. But the texture and flavour of the ricotta hotcakes were still perfect, they had small chunks of ricotta through them, dense but not too still. Let’s just say, if you like pancakes, hot cakes or pikelets you’ve gotta come try these!

The quality of the food definitely made up for the unpleasant waitress. Mr Bao and I have always liked Proud Mary and whenever guests come to visit we always bring them here and food is consistently good. The service and wait for tables is the main deterrence for us not coming back as often as we’d like. But I would still recommend you trying if you haven’t, just bear in mind of the long wait and the inconsistent service.

Proud Mary on Urbanspoon


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22 thoughts on “C&J Melbourne Travels – Proud Mary

  1. grabyourfork November 22, 2013 at 12:28 pm Reply

    Yum that potato hash looks awesome. And it’s such a miserable today in Sydney I could totally go for those frank n beans!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:04 am Reply

      Awww everyone’s been telling me that the weather hasn’t been that great in Sydney 😦 Hope it improves this week ~

  2. hotlyspiced November 22, 2013 at 1:37 pm Reply

    An unpleasant waitress? She should be fired. My Archie has been working in a cafe with a very, very rude waitress who never smiles at the customers and tells them off for standing in the way and taking too long to order etc, etc. And she was so awful to Archie and used to say horrible things about him, in front of him to customers like, ‘Sorry he’s taking so long to bring you your bill, he’s a bit slow’ and even worse things. The people running the cafe are worse than useless (never run a cafe before) and wouldn’t do anything about her. He’s now left and about to start working at Bathers Pavilion – a much better place to work. Anyway, enough about Archie…I think you’ve had a really busy year with lots of traveling and lots of working and so much eating out and visitors as well! I would definitely order the potato rosti xx

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:06 am Reply

      Oh gosh…that’s horrible Charlie! I am so glad Archie has found a much better place to work! It’s crazy how some people can be so rude and self centred it’s horrible! Honestly we would have been fine if the waitress was nicer and didn’t give us attitude because the food and coffee is great here at Proud Mary….I think they just need to improve and train their staff to treat customers with a little more respect. xox

  3. Bam's Kitchen November 22, 2013 at 2:58 pm Reply

    Rose and fruit juice sounds like a delicious drink to substitute for caffeine.

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:07 am Reply

      I agree 🙂 But I honestly don’t drink enough juice hehe should get into it!

  4. Lily November 22, 2013 at 5:32 pm Reply

    I have very big issues with cafes with nazi attitudes. Who do they think they are, without us customers they wouldn’t have a business to run, & it’s only cafe food for God’s sake, not rocket science. I certainly would NOT spend my money at a place with such attitudes & I would walk out on them, which my husband & I did exactly that on Proud Mary a year ago. They sure lived up to their name, too PROUD & CONTEMPTUOUS of us paying customers! There are too many COOL cafes with GREAT service in Melbourne these days to put up with such rudeness!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:09 am Reply

      Oh gosh that’s such a shame you had such a bad experience at Proud Mary 😦 Because apart from this time, the other times we’ve been it has been fine, not exactly friendly but definitely not as rude as this waitress and the attitude. I do agree though that there are so many other cafes in Melbourne that we can choose from ~ don’t let it affect you! Happy Brunching!

  5. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella November 22, 2013 at 7:59 pm Reply

    The hotcakes look magnificent but I think we could do without that waitress with attitude. So unnecessary!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:09 am Reply

      The hotcakes were definitely my favourite 🙂 But I definitely wished the waitress was more friendly and handled the situation a lot better!

  6. Choc Chip Uru November 23, 2013 at 8:45 am Reply

    Ugh that waitress should not only be fired for her attitude, but for wasting food – what a witch!
    But besides that unpleasant period, this cafe looks like its food is quite delicious and decadent 😀
    Lovely photos!


    P.S I have recently lost around 1000 subscribers and I have no idea how, so if it is not too much trouble, if you were subscribed before, could you please resubscribe? Thank you!

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:11 am Reply

      Yes she wasted my hot chocolate! But I do understand that maybe they didn’t want us to bring it into the cafe, but it’s quite rude oh wells 🙂

      Oh dear of course I will resubscribe but I think I still get your emails so don’t worry! xox

  7. GourmetGetaways (@GourmetGetaway) November 24, 2013 at 2:31 pm Reply

    You have been very busy this year!!! What a shame the waitress was rude… the food actually looks really good so it is a shame 😦

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:15 am Reply

      Yes i haven’t really stopped this whole year and I don’t think it’s going to get any better hahaha with Christmas and New Years coming! 🙂 I actually really like the cafe but the long queues and the attitude of the staff really turns me off sighhhh

  8. The Hangry Bitch November 24, 2013 at 10:57 pm Reply

    Oh dear, there’s nothing like bad service to ruin everything, no matter how good the food or coffee may be.
    Thankfully my experiences at Proud Mary have been pleasant. The coffee and ricotta pancakes are amazing.

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:17 am Reply

      I have to admit though my previous experience at Proud Mary hasn’t been too bad not exactly the most friendly but it was fine and I understand that they are very busy but we were just really offended by the attitude..but they read my post and apologised on twitter so I really appreciate it ~

  9. Tina @ bitemeshowme November 25, 2013 at 8:13 am Reply

    i think you chose the best dishes to be shared! sounds like you’ve had such a crazy busy year.. and i bet it’s only going to continue leading up to xmas and new years ahahah x

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:19 am Reply

      Hahaha i totally agree I’m already planning Xmas Parties and New years getaways and things so definitely not going to be any better 😛 You know me too well!

  10. Cara @ Gourmet Chick November 25, 2013 at 3:53 pm Reply

    I think word has got out about Proud Mary as I had a friend recently visiting and she had the cafe on her hit list. Pity about the service (not a problem I’ve encountered on my visits there though)

    • Daisy@Nevertoosweet November 26, 2013 at 12:20 am Reply

      It’s good and I actually really like the food and coffee at Proud Mary just the long queues and the service can sometimes be a turn off 🙂 I think just maybe that morning was super busy so the waitress wasn’t very patient with us ~ it’s ok! I really appreciated that they apologised on Twitter so will give them another chance!

  11. Amanda@ChewTown November 26, 2013 at 1:06 pm Reply

    Potato hash and pork belly sandwich sound like music to my ears… the attitude, not so much!

  12. ironchefshellie December 2, 2013 at 9:39 pm Reply

    Still never been to Proud Mary… too many places to go to!

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