Let me paint you a scene. After a hard day at school of scribbling on paper, kicking up dust in the playground and doing those math equations that seem to have no relevance to life (unless the Pythagoras theorem can somehow prove that the Illuminati exists), you want something to revive your energy. In the scorching afternoon Australian heat, you walk down the sizzling, grey concrete in your sweaty school uniform towards your local milk bar.
Wait, milk bar? What is that? (Who am I talking to?) Milk bars are similar a local convenience store where they sell milkshakes (of course), sweets, fast food and traditionally they also sold newspapers and cigarettes (don’t smoke kids).
Daisy’s Milkbar is a time capsule that captures all the desires and dreams of a kid growing up in the 90s. It is a contemporary take on the classic Australian milk bar. Walking into the milk bar, you’d feel like Benjamin Button with your age clock winding backwards to when you were an innocent, naïve child. This friendly little milk bar is bright and cheerful in both its service and décor.
Right beside the entrance, you are immediately tempted by a wall full of 90s sweets such as Ovaltine (remember dealing these at school?), Double Dip, Pop Rocks, Melody, Fads, Super Tattoos and Ring Pop. True to the original milk bar concept, Daisy’s Milkbar operates as a mixed business and offers adorable gifts to take away as a memento. Opposite this wall is a mural of iconic 90’s favourites such as Bubble O’ Bill, fairy bread (which they have on the menu) and Ring Pop.
There are so many references from the 90s’ around the milk bar that the employees are probably tired of hearing customers constantly exclaiming ‘Oh! Do you remember this?’ But seriously, no matter how cold hearted your soul is, you cannot resist the charming décor.
Once you read the menu, you will be tempted to order one of each item. That is a good and bad idea. It’s good for the soul, but bad for the digestive system. After a long and painful deliberation, we had to say sayonara to our what-could’ve-been food babies and settled on the veggie option of Daisy’s Breakfast ($21) and the Zucchini Parmy Burger ($16). Because it was a milk bar, it would’ve been a crime not to order a milkshake. So, to shake things up a bit, we ordered the We Swear It’s Vegan Shake ($10). Don’t worry vegans, they SWEAR its vegan.
The veggie option of Daisy’s Breakfast included golden, pan-fried pieces of salty haloumi, grilled button mushrooms, crispy potato gems, saucy beans, roasted tomatoes, fresh avocado, eggs and sourdough toast. The non-veggie option included bacon and pork sausage instead of the haloumi and mushrooms. You have all the suspects of a traditional breakfast like the beans, avocado, tomatoes and toast. You must be thinking there’s nothing special about such a simple breakfast dish, right? Wrong. It may be a simple meal but the all the flavours in the dish were so meticulously executed, I struggled to find any flaws.
The tomatoes were roasted with sprigs of rosemary that accentuated the fruit’s sweetness. The potato gems were probably my favourite component in the dish. They had a crispy outer layer with hints of thyme and a soft filling of potato and was finished with a light sprinkle of salt. The beans were the surprisingly element that tied the dish together. It looked and tasted like homemade baked beans with its sweet tomato sauce with chunks of tomato and caramelised onions mixed among the beans. Daisy’s Breakfast was pleasantly surprising with its rich flavours and textures. You could tell a lot of thought was put into each characteristic of the dish. Lesson learnt from this dish: do not underestimate simplicity.
Who doesn’t like burgers? *Silence* That’s what I thought. The Zucchini Parmy Burger is jam packed with flavours that will remind you of when your parents treated you to a burer as a kid. With the burger’s soft, fluffy sweet bun to its melting, stringy cheese, you can’t go wrong. This outstanding burger consisted of cornflake crumbed zucchini (already sounds amazing), parmingina sauce (genius), garlic aioli (everyone needs some garlic aioli in their lives), baby spinach (so you can tell your mum you ate some greens today), cheese (obvs) and onion (Shrek would be proud). Let me give you a close-up of this baby.
Like the beans in Daisy’s Breakfast, the parmingina sauce was the glue that brought this burger together. The sweet tanginess of the sauce worked well with the saltiness of the cheese and the subtle pungency of the garlic in the aioli. The crumbed zucchini added great texture to the burger. The soft, juicy zucchini was contrasted with the crisp, crumbed outer layer. The burger was very satisfying with its myriad of flavours mingling with one another whilst all being contained within fluffy burger buns.
The We Swear Its Vegan Shake was dangerously addictive. The thick milkshake consisted of soy ice cream, almond milk, vegan chocolate syrup and peanut butter. If you are a lover of peanut butter (like me), you would love this milkshake. It was served with excess vegan chocolate syrup dripping down the insides of the glass and a generous amount of peanut butter coating the rim.
The milkshake perfectly balance the amount of chocolate (so it wouldn’t be too sweet) and the peanut butter (so it wouldn’t be too rich). All the elements complimented one another without making it too bland or overpowering. During your first sip, you would taste the sweet chocolate syrup then the nutty creaminess of the peanut butter. The milkshake was smooth and velvety, reminding you of those hot summer days spent sipping on milkshakes to cool down.
If a sudden wave of nostalgia hits you, you now know where to go. Daisy’s Milkbar is the perfect place to relive your childhood or to just sit back and enjoy the good food and friendly service.
340 Stanmore Road, Petersham, Sydney NSW
Phone: (02) 8065 3466
Web: Daisy’s Milkbar