Update: Since this review, the cafe is now under different management.
In Glen Waverley, the Kingsway strip is overrun with cafes, restaurants and entertainment. Being a regular visitor to the location, one quickly tires of what this area has to offer. Further, good coffee, as it is, is hard enough to find in this area of suburbia. Welcome ‘Zest 89’ to the scene. A new cafe situated on the corner of Kingsway and Montclair Avenue, Zest is a breath of fresh air in an old environment.
Though a small venue, it is spacious and uncluttered (currently seating 30 persons, though, expanding to seat 50 persons including outdoor seating, in the near future). The setting is well-lit during the day by the northern sun, which will provide an airy setting in the coming summer. Having only been open 4 weeks, the interior is still awaiting some final visual touches, but the simple, modern design highlighted by a bright yellow coffee machine give the place a nice charm.
My particular favourite of Zest is its coffee. The day staff are highly experienced delivering consistent, beautiful Veneziano coffee each time. While the changing temperature of the venue challenges the grind setting, the coffee is a strong full-bodied, smooth delight. Whether you like your espresso or cafe latte, you will not be disappointed. Also, if you like your chais, you have a choice between a spiced or vanilla option (and it’s not too bad).
The food, while only having sampled a portion of the menu, is fresh, well-prepared, large-portioned and created with care. After all, two of the three co-owners are chefs. For breakfast, “Bruno’s Fix” is a delight boasting grilled chorizo sausage, capsicum, onion, tomato, fetta and soft poached egg. For a light lunch, the delightful ‘Crispy Spiced Calamari’ is a huge contrast to “rubber” calamari usually found elsewhere.
All this is accompanied by delightful staff who serve with a smile. Keep your eye out for this ever-evolving place as it grows and matures into, what I hope, is a new standard in Kingsway hospitality.
Glen Waverley 3150
T: (03) 9561 8918