Wholly Crumpets opens a crumpet and coffee cafe in Bulimba
There’s something about the humble crumpet that we’ll always treasure. While more grown-up breakfast carbs like bagels or artisanal sourdoughs tickle our sophisticated adult sensibilities, the thought of the golden and bubbly crumpets of our youth still hold a special place. The crew behind Wholly Crumpets is changing the dialogue around the toasted delight, transforming it from a nostalgia-inducing artefact into a popular cafe staple. Speaking of cafes, Wholly Crumpets has opened one of its own in Bulimba, serving its brand of delightfully dense discs crowned with an assortment of tasty toppings.
Wholly Crumpets are a common fixture at many Brisbane cafes these days. You’ll spy them on the menu at Sister in Hawthorne, North Lakes locale Told You So, West End brunch spot Morning After, Supernumerary in Salisbury and Peach Cafe in Auchenflower, to name a few – not to mention on the shelves at many local providores and grocers. When hospitality veteran brothers Billy and Miller Rouse teamed up to launch Wholly Crumpets (which began life in 2018 as a market-based vendor) they probably wouldn’t have predicted that their nostalgia-inducing product – that is, light and golden crumpets – would rapidly grow to boast such a rabid fanbase. In reality, who wouldn’t relish the opportunity to wake up to lightly toasted crumpets lathered in a condiment of their choice? The increase its wholesale portfolio, coupled with a pandemic-induced explosion in demand for artisanal pantry fillers, meant that the past few years have been great ones for Wholly Crumpets as a business. Today, the duo operates a commercial kitchen space in Ashgrove as well as a newly opened cafe in Bulimba, which, as you might guess, boasts crumpets at its centre.
The 20-seater cafe, which occupies the site formerly home to Crumbs Sandwich Bar, is a largely alfresco establishment with a crisp-white dispensary overlooking a scattering of shaded tables. Although boasting a small footprint, Billy and Miller make the most of the space available, creating a punchy menu that looks to circumvent expectations and deliver an oft-overlooked staple in an off-centre – yet incredibly tasty – way. The Wholly Crumpets offering starts simple, with buttered crumpets coated in lashings of Hive & Harvest honey, house jam, 100s & 1000s, Butta Nutta honeycomb butter, Vegemite or three cheeses. Gradually the toppings become more complex, with sweet options like banana with honeycomb butter and bee pollen leading into layered savoury selections like smoked salmon with dill cream cheese and capers, tomato with ricotta, herbs and balsamic or avocado with fetta, lemon and hemp seeds. Those with a larger hunger rumbling in their stomach should look to the Crumpy section – crumpet sandwiches stuffed with the likes of fried egg, bacon, cheese, mayo and HP sauce, mushroom, jalapeno, cheese, sour cream and chutney, or Branston pickles with three cheeses. Beyond crumpets, Wholly’s cafe also serves granola topped with Greek yoghurt and fruit, and soup of the day with a side of crumpet soldiers for dipping. Seeing as a crumpet and a coffee go hand-in-hand, Billy and Miller have enlisted local roaster Tim Adams Specialty Coffee as its caffeine supplier of choice, pouring espresso, one and one, batch brew, cold brew and a signature sip called the Morning Glory – an invigorating mixture of cold brew, tonic, bitters and orange. Juices, hot chocolates and loose-leaf teas are also available, as are take-home six packs of Wholly’s five-inch crumpets.
Wholly Crumpets is now open and is operating as takeaway only through lockdown. Head to the Stumble Guide for operating hours.
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