Finding the Best Coffee – The French Lantern #22

French Lantern CoffeeThe French Lantern appears to just be like any other Gold Coast Cafe. A few seat and umbrellas out the front trying to lure people in for the Merlo coffee, but wait there is more.

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.

French Lantern Coffee

The door way to the High Tea Room is just on the left of the photo.

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.

French Lantern Coffee

It is a little bit lovely 🙂

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!

French Lantern Coffee

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 🙂

French Lantern Coffee

Muggalatte or Chino $5

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.

French Lantern Coffee

My cute piccolo $4.60 (double shot)

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!

French Lantern Coffee

Sim’s Hot Chocolate $5

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!

French Lantern Coffee

The offending carrot cake $4.50

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

French Lantern Coffee

Egg Benedict no bread $15.90

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.

French Lantern Coffee

I though mine looked nicer with all that lovely green and you could choose from ham or bacon

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!

French Lantern Coffee

Dense flourless chocolate cake, because it has not flour…? LOL

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

Tan Sim Liz Sophia
Food 7 L 7.5 8.5 8
Drinks 7 7 7 8
Service 8 8 8 8
Atmosphere 9 9 9 9


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!

Enjoy Irresponsibly!

Liz xx










If you enjoyed this review, maybe check out these too?

Finding the Best Coffee – Lott #19

Lott Coffee

Finding the Best Coffee – Canvas #15

Canvas Coffee

Finding the Best Coffee, Commune, Burleigh #6

Coffee #6



Elizabeth Connolly on EmailElizabeth Connolly on FacebookElizabeth Connolly on Instagram
Elizabeth Connolly
I have been cooking since I can remember. I am a Thermomix consultant, so now (whenever possible) try to give you Conventional AND Thermomix methods for the recipes. I like to share tips on how to save money and how making food from scratch isn't really that hard (especially with a Thermomix). If you have any questions about the Thermomix or cooking/food in general please email me as I'm happy to chat.
Liz xx
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  1. Hotly Spiced

    Poor Tan. Sometimes I feel like Tan! I do like the look of the cafe. I think your eggs bennie looks a lot better with all the greenery although I do prefer my spinach to be a little bit wilted. I do hope Tan has an uneventful cafe experience next time xx

    • Elizabeth Connolly

      Awww, I’m glad you have sympathy for her Charlie, I just think its funny 🙂 I am afraid that the next cafe, they did gain muck up her order 🙂 Liz xx

  2. Anna @ shenANNAgans

    Holy moly, OUCH…. the date pit would have frightened the life out of me. I love eggs benny, especially when it is without bread. Good choice!

    Worst food misadventure. I had been camping/roughing it for a week or so and we decided to splurge on a ‘fancy’ lunch. Our food arrived, it was amazing until the man next to us sneezed and we were covered in his … yeah! Sooo gross. Makes me gag a little thinking about it. Upshot was he paid for our entire bill and bought us a few beers too. So not the fault of the restaurant, but still a food misadventure.

    • Elizabeth Connolly

      LOL… That is an awesome food misadventure… But yeah yuck…. I’m glad he paid… It must have been a colossal sneeze!!! Liz xx


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