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Sunday, June 15, 2008
  Occam Espresso Bar

Occam Espresso Bar Kitchen
135 Williamson Avenue
Grey Lynn
Auckland, 1002
Tel: +64 (0)9 378 0604

On a side street corner opposite Foodtown (with street parking nearby), the location is not impressive, though the venue is well designed and pleasant. The staff is friendly and efficient and the atmosphere is welcoming. Plenty of pavement seating is available, though we preferred to sit near the gas-log fire. Which all sounds ideal for a local cafe, and we "seemed to remember" it had got a good write-up in the NZHerald, too!

Sadly on Saturday, neither the food nor the coffee lived up to this promise. The coffee was bitter. The only good thing I can say about it was that it was good and strong. (I have read other reviews that praise the coffee, so we may have hit a trainee barrista, but I can only tell it as we found it, and both Barbara and I were slower than usual finishing our long black and soy cappuccino.) The food sounded good, basically the usual breakfast menu, but with some unusual touches. I chose herby hash cakes with poached eggs, wilted spinach and hollandaise. I imagined a crisp coat over aromatic potato mash, with the eggs and spinach to complete it. The eggs were fine, the spinach was good. The hollandaise was ladled on with a heavy hand, so that I had to act quickly to prevent the hash cake from drowning. A shame because the stack looked pretty. Yes, the hash cake was singular, and it made a stack. It was a tall pile of potato mash that had indeed seen the frying pan, though it was not crisp - even on its outside.

Barbara's corn fritters were cool inside, and got a cool reception. :(

So overall poor food that was not redeemed by either the nice presentation or the waiters with three foot pepper pots, and coffee that was disappointingly bitter. We do remember the Herald reviewers as liking Occam so if your experience was different to ours, please let me know and we will give it another try in a few week's time.

Till then:
  • Coffee - Poor
  • Food - Poor
  • Ambience - Good

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