All aboard to The Loose Caboose, 21 First Street, Hindmarsh, Adelaide, SA

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I have been looking so forward to checking this venue out as I have literally had half a dozen people tell me “I must visit for my blog”. Given that now I have overcome my fear of venturing down Port Road, I have been excited about heading back to this side of town for brekky, although this spot today is actually more familiar to me as it is near “The Gov” – frequently frequented thanks to my music interests but it is nice to see this area in the light of day. Google maps does send me on a bum-steer trying to enter First Street from non existent entrances off Park Terrace but save yourself the loops and turn off Port Road directly opposite the Entertainment Centre which is a paved carpark lane way.

It is actually pretty awesome to see this old railway building at the Bowden station used for something of this nature… and they certainly promote the association to the train line with large windows looking through to the station so you get to see & hear all the trains stopping or passing by regularly. It really adds to the atmosphere quite nicely.

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My first impression inside is that it is big, but when you continue through a lot of the area is the entrance, kitchen and what is after 10am on a weekend also used for significant ‘line ups’… Then there actually is a modestly sized eating area inside and an outside deck. I like the open-ness and admire the huge lofty exposed ceiling with a bar area in the centre which is already a-buzz with activity. Looking around they have really made the décor their own, it is very ‘now’ but it doesn’t feel like they have tried to fill it with ‘funky retro’ for the sake of it. Things seem to belong, which is why it feels nice. We grab a decent sized table thanks to an early start and peruse the menu. Lots of great offerings. I have heard rave reviews on the banana bread and the chocolate chip pancakes also sound nice to me but having just gone back onto sugar it may be an overload so I revert to my staple of scrambled (or as they call them folded) eggs and bacon on the side, the other girls get the Avocado Smash. Following the run of over 35 degree days in Adelaide the three of us all opt for juice over coffee too.

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We go up to order, personally a place with this style and the decent price tag on menu items I would really like table service, I am tired and in an ideal world I just want to sit and absorb time with my friends. Oh well.

We all order and from their assorted fresh juices I ask for an apple/orange but am declined as they “will not go outside the standard combinations”. Really? Is it too hard to assist with this seemingly basic request? The girl at the counter seems flustered by any request to be honest. They do go outside ‘policy’ for my friend who has fructose issues and prefers to have a combo without apple. So if you have a medical reason you can be an exception it seems. Could I be allergic to orange only but ok if apple is mixed with it?!?! Hmmmmm.

The juices are out quickly and are good. Served in jars like my Café Troppo review but a less ‘poor-mans’ version as they are amber glass with a cool neck at the top – almost custom made – I likey. My orange, orange and orange juice (minus some wanted apple) is nice and refreshing.

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It seems like twenty seconds after the juice is out and first sip taken that the meals arrive. Seriously, like the blink of an eye. Wowee. It is all looking generously served, bright and piping hot on big plates. We dig in enthusiastically and everyone is happy… you can tell that it is hitting the spot for all. My folded eggs are rich and generously laced with parsley (it’s ok I like it though) and good seasoning, bacon is nice and still juicy and a lovely flavour. Poached eggs cooked really well and the avocado and tomato add some freshness ideal for a summer’s day that the other girls really like. If I am being over-critical I wish they didn’t give me a butter spread for the toast in the foil folded sachet – couldn’t they serve a wedge of butter in a little dish like their house-made tomato relish I have on the side or even pre-butter it for me? It would just look more premium, better for the perception they are obviously trying to achieve here. But this is the end of my criticism on the meal really, so isn’t really of any major consequence.

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Bellies full and happy we just sit for another forty minutes or so and enjoy the place, play with the bub and catch up like we really wanted to in this great setting. The venue continues to pump… seeing ‘The Board Breakfast’ go past to other tables it looks like breakfast mecca – too much for me but with the right appetite (or hangover) it would be awesome!

While we didn’t check out the coffee today, being so hot and bothered in this Adelaide heat, their machine certainly presents that they are serious about coffee and you can see they have their own beans, also available for sale… which are apparently house sought and roasted. So check it out for sure in one of their signature blue cups.

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Almost everything about this place is near perfect – the vibe, the setting, the food. It is nice to see a restaurant that gets so much right. Feedback from others is that it is consistent too – no one I have spoken to has seen it slip yet – which is good news as great expectations can be hard to uphold. There is also a lunch menu which looks delicious and I will definitely be back to check that out. So make Loose Caboose your next stop, you won’t be sorry you got off at this station.

The Loose Cabosse
21 First Street, Bowden, Adelaide, South Australia
(enter Station Place laneway, a paved carpark lane off Port Road opposite the Entertainment Centre, or catch the train to Bowden station)

Food: 9/10
Service: 8/10
Vibe: 9.5/10
Cost: $$

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2 thoughts on “All aboard to The Loose Caboose, 21 First Street, Hindmarsh, Adelaide, SA

  1. Pingback: Go West… Plant 13. 18 Park Terrace, Bowden, Adelaide, SA | haysaysdotcom

  2. I went here based on your recommendation and loved it- line up is super long on a public holiday however so get in before 9:30 to secure a seat (we came in at 9am, waited for 5 mins…by the time we left at 10am the line up was a good 30 min wait. Eek!)

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