VOP: Petit Bocal – good enough to bottle!

Those of you who follow Poncentric will know I have a penchant for all things French so it should come as no surprise to hear that I was keen to try Petit Bocal located at 177 Sandringham Road, Sandringham and it obviously qualifies as a VOP (Venturing Outside Ponsonby). And what do I mean by “good enough to bottle”? You’ll find out later for those who need a little help with the imagery!!

We had a family brunch there recently to celebrate un anniversaire. It’s a lovely café decorated to evoke memories of Paree and things francais. And a number of staff are de la France so it has a great authenticity about it.IMG_3662IMG_3658

It was very busy at 11.30 on a Saturday morning and finding a table for 8 was a bit of a challenge. So we squatted at various tables until we managed to take over the large central table which met our needs perfectly. My apologies to the three people who got progressively squeezed out by our advance!

Coffee to get things started was top notch (my favourite – Supreme) as was the super juice [berry, vitamin c and echinacea]. Just in case you didn’t know Echinacea is a very popular herb, especially for the treatment of flu and colds. It is a genus of herbaceous flowering plants in the daisy family. So there. And they stock orangina [hooray] with those so cute bottles. So cute that Deb took away the empties haha.IMG_3659

The menu was very exciting with a number of twists on old favourites. Not surprisingly I was drawn to the breakfast bruschetta diced tomato, avocado, red onion and basil with crispy bacon, poached eggs and citrus hollandaise and crispy bacon (salmon gravlax also available). IMG_3665

Others had variously the bagel [w cream cheese, home cured salmon gravlax, rocket, red onion and capers] and the gluten free bacon, spinach and poached eggs served on potato with citrus hollandaise and w salmon gravlax or bacon.IMG_3672IMG_3663

Eating my breakfast bruschetta I was in heaven. I love the tomato/avo/onion/basil combo – even more so when it is finely chopped. The bacon was delightfully crispy, the eggs perfectly poached and the citrus in the hollandaise lifted it well above the normal fare. It’s a long time since I’ve had such a glorious brunch.

My companions were similarly captivated by their selections. I got a “teaspoon” of Deb’s potato and it was divine. You don’t share yours she said!!

The staff were a joy to deal with. Geraldine (from Brittany), Nathan (from Marseilles), Coco, Jimmy (the barista) and Georgina can take a bow for all contributing to what was a very memorable celebration.

This delightful café got everything right and I can’t wait to go back.

Next time I might also sample the “patisserie” selection that included fantastic looking cinnamon brioche and passionfruit and chocolate cronuts. Check them out.IMG_3657

So what was that “good enough to bottle” bit. Well “bocal” means “jar” so go figure.

Vive la France

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