Published on November 8th, 2013 | by Ann Rickard0
Cafe Le Monde – Hastings Street
We all know it’s a Noosa institution that has been in Noosa longer than most of us, but now Cafe Le Monde, always evolving and keeping up with times and trends, just got a whole lot better.
As well as new all-weather protective awnings over the street and a new executive chef with a pleasing pedigree (he trained under Michelin star chefs in the UK and has worked with three hat chefs here in Australia), the popular cafe now has the twinkling benefit of a mass of fairy lights in the trees outside.
The Hastings St tree-lighting project is almost completed, the Le Monde end is up and running, and it’s glorious. You can’t fail but to have your spirits lifted at the sight of the pretty lights along the street.
Chef Oliver Carruthers has introduced a new spring menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner and it brims with lighter dishes to take you into the hot months ahead.
We began our dinner with a tasting plate: a pleasingly long plate of chicken tostadas, two plump just-shucked Coffin Bay oysters, long strips of chilli salted calamari and skewers of coconut prawns. How about that to lift the mood even higher?
Then a big plate of fish tacos came to us. With bowls of black beans, slaw, jalapeno and pico de galo to plonk on the strips of fish and wrap in soft tortillas it was interactive food, great fun, big on flavour.
Cafe Le Monde buzzes day and night. Families love it, couples can get cosy, and groups can take a long table to spread themselves our.
Waitstaff flit about the floor delivering mountainous seafood platters, pizzas on long boards and cocktails by the tray load. There is a casual yet slick atmosphere and a sense of Cafe Le Monde being a place for all of people all of the time.
Big main dishes of satisfying eye fillet, crispy skinned salmon, prawn linguini and the ubiquitous beer batter fish and chips all satisfy, but be warned, the Moroccan spiced chicken is huge. A half chicken comes with preserved lemon and golden raisin cous cous. It’s a challenge to get through it all but so worth it for the intense flavours.
All around us people were using Cafe Le Monde to suit their individual needs: some had popped in to share a pizza (the seafood with Noosa reds and buffalo mozzarella looked good); families were feeding the young ones before heading off early; groups were going for cocktails and fries with aioli; and a restrained couple next to us dined on steamed vegetables and fresh fish.
We finished our big feast with a Mars Bar parfait, and yes, the guilt came later, but as we dug our spoons into the slab of parfait and topped it with slivers of chocolate and caramel crumble, remorse was the last thing on our minds.
Breakfast as Cafe Le Monde can be healthy with a bowl of Belmondos gourmet muesli, or avocado and tomato bruschetta, or it can an indulgence with a bacon and egg burger on Turkish roll with Kenilworth cheddar and rocket.
Lunch has those delicious tacos on the menu, as well as the tasting plate and prawn linguine. Favourites that have made Cafe Le Monde so popular (cheese burger; pumpkin ravioli) stay on through all seasons as do the big sandwiches served on pumpkin rye (try the Yankee with prawn roll, lettuce, creme fraiche and lemon and chilli.)
Chef Oliver is obviously delighted to be at Cafe Le Monde after working in Sydney at some impressive restaurants including Mirabelle, The Bambini Trust and the Morrison Oyster Room where he received some serious accolades.
“Noosa is highly regarded as a regional food destination and I am thrilled to be heading up the team at Café Le Monde,” he said. “The bistro is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and everything in between and serves an incredible amount of covers each day and I am really looking forward to bringing a fresh approach to Le Monde’s menu.”
52 Hastings St,
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Dinner prices average: E: $15; M $29; D all $12.50.
Telephone: 5449 2366