Bookplate Canberra

My team organised a lunch at Bookplate, the cafe at the National Library of Australia, which has come under new ownership this year. The menu is varied and extensive, making it hard to pick just one thing. One of my favourite lighter meals is a caesar salad, which was my pick on this visit. Whilst you have to order at the counter, meals are brought out to you – we sat under the beautiful stained glass windows. The salad was elegantly presented in a reasonable-sized bowl. This caesar was all about the individual flavours – the pancetta was beautifully crispy and salty, the lettuce really fresh, and the spring onion added a kick. I am a sucker for good croutons, and these were right up there, although a little hard to cut. My only complaint was the lack of dressing – a good, oily caesar dressing would have gone better than the sparing daubs of a creamy version. For dessert I ordered one of the giant hazelnut meringues in the cake cabinet – it was heavenly! There was a lovely balance of crispy outer and gooey inner and the hazelnut flavour was just perfect throughout. Oh yes, I’ll be back.

Bookplate, National Library of Australia, Parkes Place, Parkes ACT

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