When you name your café after your partner, you know you’re visiting a brekky joint that’s built out of love. That is the premise of owner Philip Ocampo’s Something for Jess. A café that’s conveniently situated in Chippendale a short walk away from Central.
Something for Jess considers itself a “boutique café”. I’m not really sure what that means, since every café is supposedly individual, but when we walk in, we’re convinced that this quaint little place is something a little bit different.
I’m sure Jess loves it. Read on.
Date Last Visited: 28/1/14
Address: Cr O’Connor And Abercrombie St Chippendale, NSW 2008
Recommended Dish(es): N/A – menu changes frequently
We tried to get to the café from Redfern station, which turned out to be not such a great of an idea. Alleyways were traversed, GPSes were consulted. Alas, we even walked right past it. Signage is scant.
Knowing that it is on a corner does help, and with the pictures I hope you can now find it. Perhaps I’m just clueless.
An eclectic collection of threadbare bygones is the primary schema of the café. Indeed, it is apparently the case that Ocampo spent very little on furniture/decorations – almost everything was found on the streets (thoroughly cleaned, of course) or have been donated by family and friends.
Such a collection of accoutrements saves costs in addition to contributing to the vibe of the place. It’s already a little bit boutique. Putting flowers on every table is another thoughtful touch, as is the chalkboard menus which change quite frequently.
There are two coffee menus, one placed on a repurposed ladder.
The second menu, above, gives prices and more general drinks you can get.
Being a produce-oriented café, you can buy the goods yourself, if you so wish. The bare walls of the café make for excellent shelving space.
Given the searing hot day, my funemployed (inside joke) friend went for the cold stuff when it came to the daily coffee fix. Ain’t nothing going to chill one down like icy caffeinated goodness.
As for yours truly, cold drip from Costa Rica makes a showing. I have to give fair warning – Ocampo uses a pretty hectic filtration process, resulting in a brew that’s about 4-6x stronger than your regular espresso shot. How do I know this? Well, apart from the uh…able-bodied taste, I didn’t sleep until oh…4am the next day?
Yowsa. What a hit.
Ocampo’s got two philosophies – one is to buy local, and the other is constant change. He sources all of his goods from local producers, and his menu changes like the wind. I only know this because I have not been able to find two alike pictures of the menu. One can see why he needs a chalkboard.
So what did le friend get to be graced with with my luck of the draw? How about some braised mushrooms & fig puree w/beetroot, broccolini, pesto & haloumi on toast? It’s friggin delicious. I was kind of glad she couldn’t finish it all 😉
There’s a lot going on in this one, but let’s just say that the bread excelled at complementing the flavours of the haloumi & zesty vegetables. A very refreshing and wholesome dish.
Oh, and notice the amazing flatware! Gorgeous plates :’)
A note that service is pretty slow, which is expected as Ocampo works with a kitchen smaller than your two-door wardrobe. I wouldn’t visit if you are in a rush. This is a place for real, legit chilling.
In the background, my dish arrives *ohhhhhhohohohoho*
HOLY MOLEH, epic massive sanger of grilled chicken w/avo & yoghurt in rustic panini makes a STRONG meal choice.
The crockery is never the same, is it. That is oh so boutique.
Screw carbs, get in my belly. The panini takes some serious teething to chew through, so probably don’t get if you don’t have a lynx’s jaw. Other than that, a delicious plate of goodness that features timeless combinations of chicken & avo. It’s never too dry either, which is a great bonus considering how much bread there is.
A difficult eat for sure, but I think it’s worth it. Took effort though – I had way too many photos taken of me attempting to conquer this sanga. It was an intense battle but well worth it. I wonder what I would look like as a gif…
I’m sorry to everyone who got my snaps that day.
Something for Jess is awesome – you’re lucky if you live close by, and it’s not too far if you don’t. Go on, experience a little boutique, born out of love 🙂
As usual, feel free to leave a comment or three 😀
- Some of the most eclectically awesome furnishings I’ve ever seen
- Really delicious, no-nonsense food
- A fair few vegetarian options
Not so Awesome:
- Conversely, not as much choice for meat lovers (only one other protein choice on menu)
- Slow service – and we didn’t go during a busy period either
- It’s on a really busy road, so you’ll have to learn to love the sound of traffic, especially trucks