Everyone needs a place to think is the plaque on the BBC benches facing the Thames in front of the British Film Institute in London. Virginia Woolf wrote on the importance of having such a place to think in her essay, A Room of One’s Own. To this I would like to add the importance of discovery. It is often the places where I discover the most that become my thinking places. Blame it on my love of travel and adventure, but I cannot write without discovery, and often these discoveries reside in tiny eateries and coffee shops. The places with the extra touches. The most fascinating menus, powder rooms, interiors and people. The places made with the most love.
Pulp Kitchen & Deli has become my new place to discover. If you begrudgingly saunter past the already filled sun-kissed tables outside, you’ll be met by a deli counter creaking with opulence in all things delightful. From delicious hand-made nougat to sinful chocolate brownies and beautiful cupcakes. Tear yourself away from this and set your weary bum down next to a farm kitchen table set with newspapers and gorgeous cookbooks. While catching up on the world, order yourself a slow beer from the waiting staff and lose yourself for a few hours. Alternatively, like me, hook up your laptop and pretend to work while you people-gaze over the lid. Pulp Kitchen is that place you discover, where the staff treat you like family, and you keep coming back, because it inevitably becomes home.
Pulp Kitchen is the gift and baby of husband and wife team, Andrea and Francois Hamman and there’s nothing gluttonous about their approach. Francois designed the chirpy interior which consists entirely of re-used/recycled pieces including the furniture. All woodwork is made from sustainable bamboo. Not that anything is thrown together, the shelving and table tops have beautiful texture, and are laden with reputable products sourced from within a 100km radius of the venue.
Flip open the menu and peruse over titles like Skinny Minnie Melon and Jamaican Me Chicken Wrap, pick a number and let your palate loose over a plate of humble good food. Every dish has a story and it’s obvious that Chef/Owner Andrea (who prefers to be called a cook) hand-picks each supplier and ingredient to bring you dishes that reflect all that she believes about food, hospitality and life. Don’t expect to have a small serving of real food under a mountain of oily starch. Every bite is pure quality. No slap chips or white bread, and even the fizzy drinks are home made. You may come hungry, but you’ll leave happy, without that demonic weight in your belly or your conscience.
My favourite menu item is the oats with raw honey, dates and banana, because of my good morning writing habits, but other items of deliciousness to discover are the Bacon Avo Open Sandwich which made it’s way to the menu as a pregnancy craving, super fresh croissants with gooseberry jam, their wild selection of popular smoothies, and their beautifully scrumptious What’s Your Beef burger. What you will also be glad to discover is that the garnishing is pure taste-budding awesomeness AND hand picked from their very own home-grown true to goodness garden. If you come too early to enjoy some locally produced Darling Brew slow beer, treat yourself to the local choice, coffee from Deluxe Coffee Works, but be warned that you are likely to order a few. For the gut conscious there’s a wide selection of absolutely fresh juice.
Like I said, nothing here is thrown together, and whether you’re a local or a traveller passing through, come and discover the best of what this region has to offer, because every eating out experience should be a discovery.