Tucked into one corner of the Maudsland Central Shopping Centre, it’s easy to see why this brunch spot is named ‘terrarium’. Glass windows compose two walls of the triangular-shaped café, looking out to Maudsland Road. Inside, the grey and white hues of the décor are livened up by green plants, hanging from the ceiling, in Medusa pots mounted on the walls and sitting in pots on tables. Fresh, bright and organic are adjectives which come to mind.
There’s not a heap of talent out in this neck of the woods apart from some great little places at Oxenford, so it’s fabulous to see this café open up in the northern suburbs. Already Terrarium has become known for their beautifully-adorned cakes; classic recipes such as the GF Orange and almond cake with fresh raspberries scattered on top, individual Bundt cakes with berry icing, Sticky date cake with butterscotch… There are luscious choices to be had that would warrant a morning tea or two!
When we visited on a weekend morning, the café was incredibly busy. People were lined up to order at the counter, the queue a few people deep. We’re here for breakfast, and already we’re impressed with the extensive menu. Standing with one foot firmly in both traditional and modern dining camps, it’s a winner. There’s a lot of organic ingredients listed, with a good spread of dishes: Açai bowl, House made granola, the ubiquitous Avo and feta mash, and Eggs Bene Haloumi stack – nothing too far-fetched, more classic done really well, both fresh and local.
We order a Classic Breakfast (fresh and well cooked, with a multitude of options to add to your liking) as well as French Toast – brioche with grilled banana and honeycomb butter, a delicious rendition of the dish.
Service to our table is efficient. We’re relaxed and enjoy the time to talk as we wait for our meals. The table beside us are less lucky, the busyness of the day leading to grumbles as one meal arrives long after the others.
There’s a touch of old school in the drinks department with classic 80s smoothies, frappées and a good choice of teas. The house blend coffee is ‘Stellated’ by Terrarium from Brisbane’s Q Roasters, a strong coffee-lover blend, offered with your choice of milk. Terrarium’s owner, Petrina Walker, who’s worked in the coffee industry for a number of years, mans the coffee machine herself, so make sure you tell her how you like your brew. There’s a single origin as well, with options to make your coffee by cold drip, espresso or pour over.
Terrarium is a great addition to the northern Gold Coast. Carefully placed to satisfy a mix of diners, the serenely beautiful venue evens out the creases in service. No doubt there’ll be even more satisfaction when the venue hours extend to include a weekend session.
141 Maudsland Rd., Oxenford Ph: 07 5573 0649 Open: Wed – Sun 7am – 3pm