I did have some pasta in the freezer at work, but someone burnt the crap out the microwave last month and it smells like an ashtray. The thought of cooking my food in there makes me heave just a little bit.
Ella’s has a great vibe. From the bare concert floors, dark mismatched wooden tables and chairs, funky art on the walls and a bookcase full of books in case you’ve come unprepared and get stood up by your lunch date. There’s a nice leafy courtyard area out the back, but it’s a little cool outside for me.
The staff here seem to know every second person that comes in. It reminds me of the old TV show Cheers, where everybody knows your name (‘cept for mine, but I’ve never really been that popular).
I’ve been to Café Ella quite a few times and from memory I’ve always ordered the same thing. Not wanting to break with tradition I stick to my guns and once again order the Avocado Salad with Chicken ($12).
I order my salad without dressing as I think it makes me sound healthy. The guy taking my order seems surprised by my request – a request which obviously makes me sound crazy for some reason, not healthy. I later spot him picking up the glass dome of the cake stand that surrounds the most enormous lemon meringue pie and hoovering up all the little bits of meringue that have broken off – we give each other a knowing smirk).
Seriously now, the salad comes with antipasto offerings like olives, artichoke and eggplant which are a little oily – and the wood fired bread has a drizzle of oil on it. I find the addition of dressing to the mix isn’t really needed.
My salad arrives and it’s overflowing with salad goodies. The plate is filled with fancy types of lettuce, rocket, carrot, cucumber, capsicum, tomato, half an avocado, crispy chicken, warm fried eggplant that is to die for, olives, artichoke and two pieces of bread. The antipasto really makes this salad something that I find enjoyable to eat . The eggplant seems to be lightly crumbed and is hands down my favourite part.
The menu says this is a BIG SALAD and they are not exaggerating. I’m really struggling by the end to fit it all in and sadly a few lettuce leaves are left behind on my plate.
Now, I didn’t have the Chocolate Cheesecake Brownie yesterday, but I’ve had it before and have drooled over it every time since. I think this qualifies me in being able to give it a quick shout out in today’s post.
This little dessert is good….very good! The mixture of cheesecake with brownie swirled through it is a match made in heaven. In fact, if heaven had a heaven that’s where this match will be mad.
I’m hoping the BFF will come here with me soon as he loves desserts and will share this little baby with me…it’s a rich, guilty pleasure that should really be shared with a BFF.
Café Ella is at 274 Abercrombie Street, Darlington.