200 Edward Street, Wintergarden Laneway, Brisbane CBD
Sometimes, I think of my desire to try any particular food venue as the product of a Strike System. When I see the name of a cafe or restaurant mentioned online, that's the first strike. If I see it again on an alternative source, that's strike two. If it's then mentioned any more times within the space of a week, the venue gets instantly skyrocketed to the top of my 'To Try' list.
Gramercy is one such venue. It was a relative new-comer to my list, since I first heard of it only 2 weeks ago. However, I ended up going there ahead of many cafes that I've been meaning to try for a long, long time, simply because I spotted it mentioned in a variety of sources over a short period of time. My internal hype generator went overboard and I found myself unjustifiably excited over what turned out to be a small, inner city cafe.
I liked that Gramercy is tucked away inside a quiet laneway section of Wintergarden. I had timed my lunch so that I missed the city peak period and it wasn't too busy when I got there. Well, I managed to score a table so that's the main thing.
The menu offerings are sparse but I saw a few things that sounded interesting. There was an amazing cake cooling off on the bench at the back of the cafe but it wasn't ready to serve yet. What a bummer! I settled for a mini coffee cake instead, along with a cup of coffee and a roast pumpkin and haloumi salad.
The coffee and cake arrived first. The coffee was good but what I really loved was the coffee cake. The Gramercy lady described it to me as a bit like an English tea cake. It was very buttery and dense, like a pound cake, but it also had a bit of a crumbly topping too.
Mini coffee cake
It went perfectly with the coffee and I had one of my "life is great" moments peering out onto the busy street, framed by the quiet lane I was in. I love watching people bustling but not being a part of it.
Pumpkin and haloumi salad
The haloumi and pumpkin salad was served with large chunks of pumpkin, slices of grilled haloumi, red onion, leaves, lentils and walnuts. There was some sort of drizzly, creamy sauce too. It wasn't the most cohesive of salads but it was very filling.
I liked Gramercy for the cake and the location/feel of the place. The salad was average but maybe other food options would be tastier. I should mention that I had a terrible episode of food poisoning later on in the day, which may or may not be caused by something I ate here. It's a sad association because I liked this cafe but I think it's irresponsible if I don't mention it.