The Abbotsford Convent, built 1901, is a unique centre where art, education, culture, history and of course food all merge together as one. There are a select few restaurants and cafes located at the Convent, and perhaps one of the most popular, and also one of the more suitable spots for little ones is the Convent Bakery.
It is a perfect spot to relax and unwind or re-charge and re-fuel after perhaps a play in the big park on site, a visit to the neighbouring Collingwood Children’s Farm, a bike ride along the river, a big fruit and veg shop at the Farmers Market, or a spot of retail therapy after one of the many markets that are often held at the Convent.
There are no highchairs, however plenty of room to wheel the pram right up to the table. There is also a spacious baby change room with change table, in the shared toilets for all of the convent cafes.
You have to order and pay at the counter, and then your order is brought to the table. When we were there, there were heaps of staff, and a lot of them seemed to be hovering around doing, well, not much. I wouldn’t really say that they were overly welcoming or friendly, as there didn’t seem to be much customer service actually involved in what they did. You order, you pay, then your food is put on the table and that is about it. No small talk. No chit chat. It is more of a transaction. However that said, it is a casual bakery style cafe, so just relax, go with the flow and enjoy the overall relaxed vibe and the good food and coffee.
The Convent Bakery serves breakfast and lunch as well as plenty of snacks and treats that can be enjoyed in between. The menu is very similar to that of their sister cafe, Chimmys, and for breakfast there are big breakkie’s with eggs, toast and sides as well as French toast, porridge, granola, fruit salad and pastries.
On the lunch menu there are two special kids items (both pasta dishes), however there are plenty of wraps, rolls, paninis, quiches as well as pies, pastries and sausage rolls that are probably more suitable for little ones, and of course a much cheaper option. On Friday’s and weekends, they also fire up the old wood fired pizza oven.
If you are just popping in for a relaxing coffee and cake, and of course the obligatory babycino for your little one, there is a yummy selection to choose from – pastries, biscuits, tarts, brownies, hedgehogs, colourful macaroons, cupcakes and muffins. If it is close to Easter time, then we also recommend trying one of their famous Hot Cross Buns.