There are two ways to get into Dandy Lane.
While we came in through an old-fashioned arcade, which made it look like we’d be dining in a terribly lit office corridor, more savvy folk would enter through Collins Court, where a giant Phibs mural captures the beaks, plumage and beady eyes of Hobart’s plentiful bird life.
Viewed from this side, the interior space is attractive and inviting.
While I’m not sure about the white wall decorated with empty picture frames, I do credit Dandy Lane with coming up with a new way to hang their Edison bulb hallmarks of a hipster café.
The stark steampunk-inspired minimalism is offset by some organic forms - a beautiful glass dome of pastel blooms sitting right on our window table, and a glass pot of the kind of sugar that says they're serious about coffee. The beans, which are from by local, small-batch roaster, Villino, went okay in a Latte ($4) but performed better in our strong Flat White ($4); so go the Extra Shot ($0.50) if you like good coffee cut-through.
Dandy Lane puts their own spin onto hipster breakfast standards. They are clearly concerned with how their dishes will look on Instagram, but the vanity metrics are mostly kept in balance with creating good flavour. Zucchini, Mint and Fetta Fritters ($19.50) are fresh and tasty against a pink lake of harissa labneh scattered with seeds (seed scattering seems to be a bit of a Hobart motif). You'll find the crisp brown balls tucked away under a tumble of springy fresh herbs and house-made pickles, along with a golden slab of haloumi cheese and a poached egg.
Continuing the good Hobartian form on chilli, the sriracha Hollandaise is the real win across both a Fried Chicken and Waffle Benny ($22) and a Pulled Pork Hash ($23). While there’s a lot of waffle to get though, the fried chook is a standout against poached eggs, freshened up with spring onions and parsley. I’m not quite sure what the prosciutto is doing on this plate other than adding some pink.
The same goes for the peanuts on the pulled pork hash, though I like the rest of the combination - long shreds of tasty pulled pig, crisp potato, ‘slaw and onion rings - even if it is kinda hectic for an early breakfast. It’s all bound together with that bright orange sriracha ‘Holly’ which I am pleased to report has actual bite.
While Hobart seems to err on the side of generosity, it’s my view that the portion sizes at Dandy Lane are exactly right for breakfast without bloating.
Shop 10, 138 Collins Street, Hobart
Ph: none provided
Heading to Tasmania? Does My Bomb Look Big In This? has you covered...
The Taste of Tasmania: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 & Part 4.
Breakfast (Hobart): Born in Brunswick, Dandy Lane, Room for a Pony & Macquarie St. Food Store.
Lunch (near Hobart): Willie Smith's Apple Shed & The Dunalley Store.
Dinner (Hobart): The Source, Franklin, Frank & Templo.
Beyond Hobart: Freycinet Marine Farm, Harvest Launceston & Mudbar Restaurant.