CHEEKY buggers, they’ve pinched Blake Street Merchants’ salad idea,” I thought as I perused the menu at Ninth and Merchant.
But it transpires both restaurants have the same owners and sell salads on their own ($15), or with chicken, beef, chorizo or salmon.
Replacing the old Miss Kitty’s Saloon, Ninth and Merchant is a great addition to the Inglewood end of Beaufort Street.
The eatery has the same laid-back style as Kitty’s, but the welcome was anything but casual with broad smiles and greetings from several staff, including the guy behind the bar, as I walked in.
It was too early for lunch but there was plenty on the brunch menu to tickle my fancy, and I agonised over whether 11.15am is too late for breakfast pancakes ($18).
The idea of coffee-infused maple-whipped butter was very tempting, but so was the roasted pumpkin ($18).
In the end savoury trumped sweet as there’s always cake for dessert.
Digging into the soft golden chunks of pumpkin topped with crunchy baked kale and almond bits, I congratulated myself on my decision.
A dollop of honey-whipped ricotta added a sharpness to the sweet pumpkin, and the kale was so delicious and crunchy I saved some for last.
The dish comes with an egg, but I asked for mushrooms instead, which went rather well.
It was carrot cake ($7) and a pot of earl grey to follow, with a couple of salted caramel tarts to take home ($7).
The cake was a tad dry, and needed the creamy topping, but the tarts were to die for.
Ninth and Merchant is open for breakfast and lunch, but the owners are planning to extend service into early evening, when the pizza oven will no doubt be cranking.
by JENNY D’ANGER
Ninth and Merchant
882 Beaufort St, Inglewood