Wembley is one of those suburbs where it’s old enough to still have the corner deli oddly spaced that could be transformed into divine inspirational cafés.
On the other hand, the 1970s developed area of Herdsman Parade (Wembley) has none of those things—a clear cultural change where the focus moved to supermarket buying.
Not surprisingly the corner shop concept is making a comeback after a generation was weaned on the anaemically impersonal supermarket. For those that want nostalgia, shops like the Ingredient Tree exist.
The half grocer half café–eatery concept is an attentive response to what is needed in an area devoid of cultural excitement.
You can swan in and pick up a reasonably priced fine foodstuff, meet up for a coffee or grab a meal. Or do all three.
Laconically it’s a ‘gourmet’ deli-café. However the gee word can mean many things to many people and basic food no matter how humdrum may be for one person, can be the choir of angels to the other.
You’ll find a simple ‘good’ menu available, ranging from the curiously named Remo’s Italian coffee soup for breakfast through to Ploughman’s lunch and homemade sausage rolls for lunch. It’s an interesting collection of culinary offerings—I hear they buy superb fresh pasta from Melbourne.
Ingredient Tree pours Genovese “Super Brazil” (also of Melbourne pedigree) which is robust and typically South American. It holds its edge with milk. It’s reassuring to be confident in the coffee you pour to say ‘it’s the best coffee in town’, but the coffee snobs and nitpickers will see it as a challenge to correct you.
This charming little place makes a nice duo with the Pearfect Pantry just a few blocks along Herdsman Parade.