This is a blog post that has been long overdue to be published, five months to be more accurate. My reflections on Higher Ground will be but a little step back in time when they had opened in their first couple of weeks. Higher Ground presents to Melburnian foodies a dining experience surrounded by impressively high brick walls with two levels for dining and lounging.
The atmosphere and the warm lit lamps makes you feel as if you were dining in a fancy library.
There’s lots of greenery and plants in what can be initially thought of as a very industrial setting. That is until you notice the softer touches to the cafe.
The comfortable couches and small coffee tables with your own reading lamp beside you. And not far from these couches are also some high sharing tables like your breakfast bench with stools to dine with others on.
Staff are dressed smartly, are polite and very knowledgeable about the menu and will provide recommendations if you are unsure about what to order. Also, a shout out to the couple who more than happily waved at me while I was taking some snaps.
Roasted wild mushroom, soft polenta, pecorino, hazelnut and sour dough crumble thyme $19.00
The wild mushrooms gave the dish a really strong umami flavour that worked well with the more plain soft polenta. The textures of this dish were overall creamy and smooth with bits of crunch from the hazelnut and sour dough crumble.
Kale salad, cauliflower, miso, almond hummus, avocado, poached egg, salted seeds $18.00
The creaminess of the wild mushroom and polenta dish with this crisp salad, made for the perfect combination. The kale salad is scrumptious but makes for measly portion of food on its own.
Semolina porridge, preserved summery cherry, reduced Umeshu shiso, dried plum, sesame $16.50
Neither my friend and I had ever had semolina porridge before. It’s very creamy like thickly blended congee. It would have been very plain if not for the reduced Umeshu shiso and preserved cherry to sweeten it up. The dried plums and sesame added some texture and crunch to the porridge.
Although portions may be a bit small to some I found them to be just right. Just right I refer to being satisfied and not hungry after eating, but not full either. Overall, my friend and I enjoyed the food here. You’d be looking to share at least three dishes between two people to be satisfied trending towards full.
Higher Ground is not difficult to assess by public transport at all, as it is pretty much opposite of Southern Cross Station. It can get quite busy during peak hour so keep that in mind.