My top tip for getting a table at a popular Prahran cafe on the weekend: get up early! And yes, Fourth Chapter fits into the category “popular Prahran cafe!” I arrived at about 8:15am and left just before 9. The significance of this information you ask? Well, on arrival there was space aplenty. Fast service and little to speak of in the way of crowds – maybe 75% full. On leaving, there was a line a mile long and paying became a bit of a pain.
It’s clear that many other people know what I do. Fourth Chapter is one hell of a great cafe.
The coffee is superb. I tend to think that I am one of the more discerning coffee drinkers, just like every other coffee drinker in inner Melbourne. Here the effort can be seen, heard, felt and tasted. At my first visit, they were too busy to sit, so I went for the take-away option. On leaving we were told: “Have the best weekend ever!” Such is the enthusiasm which these people have for their cafe, or perhaps they are just high on their own supply?
Having arrived early I was able to sample the food offering. The menu was as you would expect, with the usual suspects. Where they set themselves apart is with the quality of the offering. As is my want of late, I went for the smashed avo. In and of itself, the dish consisted of sourdough toast, avocado and poached eggs (added extra). The pumpkin sourdough was a great bread, with flavour and texture which suited the dish well. Where things got exciting was the addition of saganaki and nuts. I love a good bit of cheese, and fried cheese takes it to the next level. Unfortunately, placing the saganaki on the cold avo cooled it, and made it a little chewy, but still yum. The nuts just made me think wow! I will definitely add these to my home cooked version.
The decor is light and bright, and Fourth Chapter is far enough away from Chapel St that parking is less of an issue during the busier times. There is perhaps not enough innovation in the menu to bring me back over and over, but it is a go-to place where quality is assured.