Sumner cafe well worth the drive

ABBIE NAPIER
Last updated 08:03 22/09/2013
The Cornershop Bistro
CARYS MONTEATH

SOMETHING DIFFERENT: The Cornershop Bistro has an interesting and creative menu.

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The Cornershop Bistro is inexplicably empty for late on a Sunday morning. The sun is out, the beach is nearby, but barely a soul walks the Sumner streets.

Joke's on them, because those still abed or dining in the city are missing out on a excellent experience at the Cornershop.

Granted, it's a bit of a drive out to Sumner at the moment, but well worth it for what I consider to be one of the best meals of french toast I have had the pleasure to try.

The cafe itself is welcoming, with low ceilings and exposed metal beams. Cornershop has an interesting and creative menu. The boyfriend, for once, resists the temptation of a big breakfast (Cornershop Grill), and orders the spiced beans and chorizo with scrambled eggs.

It comes in a terracotta-coloured dish on a wooden board, and has all the trappings of home- cooked food. The beans are smothered in a rich tomato sauce and the eggs are light and fluffy. Wedges of thick, toasted white bread and butter are the perfect addition to the meal, allowing the sopping up of juices.

While the sauce is delicious, it could be improved by some spices and chilli to lift the tastebuds.

The french toast is undoubtedly the highlight. Brioche is dunked in egg mixture and cinnamon, and the edges are perfectly caramelised and crispy. It comes with buttered apples and cinnamon cream.

The apples are soft but have a bite in the centre, which is fantastic, and they have retained a bit of their tartness to cut the richness of the dish.

Apples, cinnamon and brioche make a lovely combination and a nice change from the usual bacon and banana. The brioche could use a bit more soaking before cooking as the centre of the slice is a bit dry.

Otherwise, a lovely way to start the day.

Cornershop serves C4 coffee. The barista does a good job and the flat whites are smooth and strong. In the two rounds of coffee, there is quite a discrepancy with the temperature of the milk - there is nothing worse than lukewarm coffee and the barista needs to be consistent.

Service is friendly and efficient throughout.

We will definitely be back for some more french toast, and may be brave enough to try the "coddled" eggs next time.

THE CORNERSHOP BISTRO

* * * *

WHERE: 32 Nayland St, Sumner, ph 03 326 6720.

WHEN: Wednesday and Thursday 5pm-late; Friday to Sunday, 10am-late; Monday and Tuesday, closed.

HOW MUCH: $50.30 for two, including drinks.

WHAT'S TO EAT: brunch, dinner, coffee.

WHAT DO WE THINK: Nice to have something different.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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