Lunas in Petersham is the newest cafe from the team at Sweet Belem. Located on the corner of Arthur Street and Stanmore Rd in Petersham it offers up a café menu with a distinct Portuguese flavour to it. Breakfast is served all day with items like chourico scrambled eggs or hot cakes with Portuguese tart custard. The lunch menu offers items like piri piri chicken and beef espetada.
"I haven't been to a Sydney cafe in months," says Mr NQN looking around who has been busy windsurfing and gardening these holidays. We are sitting outside at Lunas Petersham with Teddy and Milo. The two dogs are curiously sniffing around while I have a look at the menu. Lunas has an all day breakfast menu and a lunch menu so you can have your hot cakes and scrambled eggs at any time of the day. Also these versions have a Portuguese twist to them - the eggs are served with sobrasada butter and chorizo and the hot cakes with Portuguese tart custard.
We start with drinks. There's a bit of confusion with the drinks, While the flat white is excellent, we ordered a seasonal fruit frappe and instead received the smoothie for him which is nice although unsweetened and a rose sangria spritz for me. I'm not as keen on the drink so Mr NQN finishes it.
Spatchcock is a smaller bird yes but the piri piri spatchcock still impresses when it comes to the table. The flavour takes me straight back to Guia, the Portuguese chicken capital. It's lusciously textured with a wonderful marinade and sauce that sings with garlic, bay leaf and herbs. In terms of spiciness it is on the milder side. There's a wedge of roasted cabbage to accompany it but I definitely suggest the hash browns which are house made and excellent providing a necessary crunch and sauce mopping skills.
The sardines on toast is fresh sardines on broa, a Portuguese corn bread with a recipe from owner's Jose Silva's mother. There's a herby molho verde, coriander and tiny tomato with puffed rice. It's a tasty take on sardines on toast but out of the two I can't stop thinking about that Piri Piri chicken.
"Do you still want the hot cakes?" asks our waitress seeing how we absolutely polished the plates clean. Sweet-loving Mr NQN nods eagerly. The hot cakes come out with a thick hot, puffy cake with a layer of cooked apples, cinnamon and a ring of Portuguese tart custard and a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a pool of cinnamon custard cream to soak the hot cake in. The ring of custard is unusual, it's thick and set cold (I think I would have loved it with a runnier custard) but Mr NQN ends up finishing most of this with a satisfied smack of his lips at the end.
So tell me Dear Reader, which dish would you have ordered?
This meal was independently paid for.
316 Stanmore Rd, Petersham NSW 2049
Wednesday to Sunday 7am-3pm
Closed Monday and Tuesday