A new breakfast-and-lunch cafe called The Aussie Grind has opened in Frisco, from an Australian couple who moved to Texas after having a similar successful cafe in their hometown of Brisbane.
Located in a small center at 3930 Preston Rd. next to a Dillas Quesadillas and a Burning Rice, The Aussie Grind has coffee, tea, juice, smoothies, and a menu of wholesome, tempting-sounding dishes for breakfast and lunch.
Owner Lui Monforte says that he and his wife Angie liked the idea of transplanting to Texas, to share their unique Australian cafe concept.
"Texas has a lot in common with Australia," Lui — short for Luigi — says. "The people are friendly, and it's a welcoming culture."
They opened on April 18 and are already earning a reputation for their flawless "flat white," a coffee drink consisting of espresso with a thin layer of microfoamed milk on top, as well as their cool accents and doting personal touch.
"Australians take their coffee very seriously," Monforte says. "Australia had many Italian immigrants, so the country has always had espresso, and 95 percent of the cafes there are independently owned.
Their menu has a slight upscale vibe, with higher-end greens such as arugula.
There is "breaky" — their cute name for breakfast — with granola, a daily omelet, plus some unusual dishes and unusual takes on dishes we already know. Their avocado toast, for example, has feta cheese and arugula. Their pancakes, called hotcakes, have berry compote, vanilla bean ice cream, and "fairy floss" — cotton candy.
"We add the ice cream to make it a little different, to add something fun and new," Monforte says. "But we're happy to give people whatever they want."
They do a salmon stack, which is "beetroot cured" — cured in beet juice so that the salmon becomes even pinker and acquires a subtle sweetness — on sourdough bread with cream cheese, onion, capers, and watercress.
There's toasted banana bread, and breakfast gnocchi featuring potato gnocchi with bacon, spinach, and poached eggs.
Breakfast mushrooms are a unique and hearty-sounding dish combining field mushrooms with crunchy polenta, spinach, arugula, and candied bacon. They have vegemite, the famed dark Australian spread, which you can spread on toast.
Lunch includes an Angus burger and an Angus steak sandwich on ciabatta bread. Their fish and chips are done in a Shiner beer batter and, like the sandwiches, come with chunky rosemary fries.
Salads include warm mushroom salad, lamb cutlet salad, and a Newtown beef salad with mint and peanuts in a lime-infused soy dressing.
They also have entree type items, such as grilled salmon with spinach, arugula, tomato, and asparagus; and garlic prawn linguine.
Desserts include trifle, a vanilla custard puff pastry, and affogato — espresso poured over ice cream.
In addition to hot coffee drinks, they have a longer-than-usual menu of cold drinks including juice drinks, smoothies, iced chocolate, cold brew, and "fancy milkshakes," to which they add "crumbs and crunches." They're also applying for a liquor license so they can serve beer and wine.
For now, they're open Monday-Friday 6:30 am to 2:30 pm, and Saturday and Sunday 7 am to 3 pm.