I have to say that when I drove up and saw the sign for Merlo Coffee I was bitterly disappointed. It is not the worst coffee in the world, but it is not even close to the best. Normally it’s not fresh and could have been sitting around a warehouse before it even gets shipped out to the cafe AND if the cafe isn’t a busy one, goodness knows how long it sits at the shop.
Fortunately like Alice in Wonderland, I decide to jump down the rabbit hole and not immediately turn around and go. WHAT a GORGEOUS place. It really is like stepping into a little bit of Paris. Walking through, the cafe backs on to the canals at the back of Helensvale and it is a beautiful setting. They have a wonderful balcony overlooking calm greenery, with births cherry and no sign or sound of the main road just 200 metres away. Inside is decked out in all things Parisian and they also have a the high tea room, which you need to order in advanced to participate in during the week.
All the food is cooked and prepared on site and the coffee wasn’t too bad actually, at least I could drink it 🙂 Really, it was such a lovely atmosphere, that we felt like we could have sat all day and chatted.
The French Lantern Cafe is located in a very progressive little shopping centre at 340 Hope Island, Rd Hope Island. They don’t have a website, but you can check out their Facebook Page HERE And while you are there, don’t forget to check out the amazing deli and shop just around the corner… yes it is a hip and happening place in Hope Island!
To the coffee Tanya had a Muggachino, which wasn’t a Muggachino when they bought it out so she had to get another (larger) one. Then they forgot to put chocolate on it, but at that stage Tanya just needed her coffee or it wasn’t going to be pretty 🙂
This lead to what was one of the funniest conversations we have had. Tanya regaled us stories of terrible food experiences… Dear reader, she explained that she is just one of those people… If an order is going to go wrong or not be made correctly, in fact forgotten entirely it would be Tan’s order.
She then went on to explain that she was also the person that would find things in her food; hair in just about everything, glass in a salad and even a cigarette but in some soup when she was only 10 years old! It was then that Tan found a hair in her coffee 🙂 I told her that it was because really deep down it didn’t matter to her and she just cruised along and she didn’t let much phase her!
To start off with the food Sim and Tan couldn’t decide what to have, so they each ordered a cake and decide to split it in half. You wouldn’t believe it, but the half that Tan had chosen, the carrot cake had a date pit in it that she nearly broke her tooth on!
Seriously… twice in one day and even after having the crazy food conversation. I’m not sure what the universe is trying to say to Tan… Um maybe stay home more? Cook your own food? Make your own coffee? Well that can’t be right!!! LOL
Anyway Tan and Sim did say that the cakes were delicious dispute the date pip 🙂 and Sophia and I both had Eggs Benny, mine was without bread, so they popped it on a bed of spinach which was fantastic.
Apart for a few food misadventures we really enjoyed the surrounding and the staff were friendly and efficient if you don’t count Tan’s issues 🙂 Sim did say her hot chocolate was a bit too milky and not enough chocolate and while the carrot cake was delicious (pip jokes aside) the flourless chocolate cake was a bit dense, but I remarked “that is what you get when it doesn’t have any flour in it” Anyway it looks just like it should to me!
So what is our verdict. Good food, good coffee, wonderful atmosphere. I would like to try the high tea one day, so I am looking forward to going back and checking out that part of the French Lantern!
So here are our scores
What is your worst food misadventures, I would love to hear about them, it would be great for a laugh and you know I always love hearing about you!
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