The Gods Cafe and Bar at the Australian National University had been on my list of cafes to try for a long time. As it’s only open Monday to Friday, I had to wait for a day off before I could visit. After coming back from overseas, I had a few days off work so I made the most of it. The cafe is tucked away to the side of the ANU Arts Centre. I went in around 9am for breakfast and went inside to the bar to grab a menu. I was told to take a seat and order at the bar when ready.
The decor inside is hipster but slightly dark to suit a bar’s atmosphere with one wall covered in propaganda. It’s also cosy with scatter cushions to keep you comfy as well as the warmth from the hanging light globes.
I decided to sit in what looked to be an extended dining area where there was plenty of natural light streaming in through the large windows.
After ordering and paying at the bar, I received my table number on a paint brush and sat back down. Cutlery, salt, pepper and sugar were already waiting on the table.
My freshly squeezed orange juice ($7) arrived within a few minutes of ordering.
With my sweet tooth, I couldn’t resist ordering the croissant French toast ($16) with orange infused maple syrup, mascarpone, mint, strawberries and blueberries. The dish looked pretty spectacular. I received 6 mini-croissants (and tried not to think about the calories I was about to digest) which had been partly soaked in maple syrup. I loved the mascarpone which I think had also been infused with orange. The contrast of elements worked so well together. It was every bit as good as it looked.
Other breakfast items include pancakes, Pyttipanna (Swedish style breakfast), a double bacon and egg roll, eggs benedict, omelettes, a vegan breakfast and more. I also had my first mocha (forgot the price) since coming back from overseas, and it tasted fantastic.
I went back to The Gods to try the lunch menu with my friend D. The lunch menu is pub-like with items such as nachos, chicken parma, pasta and risotto, a chicken laksa (which the girl next to me was eating and the bowl was massive!), burgers and salads. After seeing, ‘no doubt no regrets’, underneath the Wild Wild West burger ($18), I decided to order it. The burger consisted of Southern fried chicken, mac and cheese, pickles, smoked cheese with the Gods secret sauce and watermelon on the side. Apart from the over supply of pickles (I’m not that into pickles), I enjoyed this burger. The fried chicken was crunchy, though slightly overcooked that it lost a bit of juiciness. The whole burger was generous in size and I was certainly very full afterwards. The cold watermelon was a nice way to end the otherwise heavy meal.
After becoming addicted to mango smoothies in South East Asia, I ordered the mango frappe ($7) from the billboard behind the bar. This was icy cold and had actual strands of mango in it. I was very happy with it.
My friend ordered the In Gods We Trust beef burger ($17). The beef pattie was tiny and didn’t make the circumference of the rest of the burger so that was a little unfortunate. The chips were crunchy and well seasoned.
Both times I dined here, the cafe wasn’t too busy so it was easy to get a table and the food came out quickly. Service was polite and pleasant. Most people were students with headphones in, busy finishing off assignments on their laptops or studying for an exam, so the cafe was relatively quiet. If you want to dine alfresco, there’s also a shaded beer garden at the back.
The Gods Cafe & Bar is situated at the ANU Arts Centre. Open Monday to Friday only. The breakfast menu is available from 7.30am-11.30am. Lunch commences 12pm – 3pm.
Value for money 7.5/10
FPJ score 23.5/30
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