Pantry Cafe has the same concept as Jones the Grocer, just in a more intimate setting.
I love the interior of the coffee shop. It's sort of an open kitchen for the salads, antipasti, beverage sections but of course the hot food section remains semi hidden. I can see the oven and the chefs moving about but I don't necessarily see or know what they're preparing.
When we visited Pantry Cafe, it was also their market day. The day where independent suppliers tied up with RIPE (organic producers) exhibit their products. It was a fun experience having your meal and getting all sorts of food-tastings from these suppliers, but not fun to be interrupted though. Of course foodies like us do not mind it at all, I just wonder how other paying customers feel about the constant intrusion in the middle of conversations. Me? I got to taste chocolate nibbles from an NYC chocolatier (super sweet!), cocktail olives (super yum!), Italian olive oil with bread, and so much more.
I'd like to think that Pantry Cafe is a cross between the TV show Friends' Central Park and the Aussie Jones the Grocer. Quirky yet a tad upmarket.
We sat down and chit chat about everything under the sun while we wait for other bloggers to arrive. Once the dishes started arriving, it was non-stop and in big portions!
We tried, Shakshouka, Middle Eastern Breakfast, Spinach and Feta Crepe, French Toast, Organic Oats, and mini croissants filled with Caprese, Grilled Chicken Mayo, Turkey Ham, Wagyu Bresaola, Norwegian Smoked Salmon. We were too full that we needed to take a break and plead with their Chef's to stop sending out more food until we get the rest we need. There are a lot of hungry people in the world so we know we will end up munching it just to make sure we did not waste any.
Over all, we enjoyed the food, some we were indifferent but most we were quite happy.
I will come back and will definitely order the Spinach and Feta Crepe as well as the ShakShouka. I know my husband and kids will lot every morsel of them breakfast.
If there there is anything I will say for improvement, it will be the service and coffee. During my time in the cafe, of course the server is on standby but not for the rest of the diners. They do take a while to get served. I remember my coffee getting cold too quickly, I'm not sure if it's the percolator's fault or it was served on our table after a long time it's been on the cup. And the coffee that I got was not anything special... granted I'm very low maintenance when it comes to coffee... I always order the boring Cafe Americano. Maybe if I order something fancy and complicated they'll whip out something super special... I'll have to come back and see.
I love their decor, open plan with rustic elements. I even love their washroom, it's like your Aunt's old place in the country, meets industrial era.