Shoebox Cafe

211a Elizabeth St, Hobart
03) 6231 5994
Open: Mon to Fri 7am to 5pm. Takeaways.

This appropriately named cafe, little bigger than a shoebox, was opened by former South Korean, Tasmanian fine arts graduate and Hobart and Sydney hospitality veteran, Sammi Whang, in January. Were the cafe in the CBD, it would be packed for the food: a blending of Asian and Western flavours as bright and fresh as Sammi’s welcoming smile.

Her Vietnamese, spicy Korean-style and teriyaki chicken, Peking duck and soy beef are all marinated and cooked on site before appearing in sandwiches of Pane Cucina pide – the best in town – in organic salads grown by the Hmongs and in her somewhat cheeky interpretation of sushi, a triangle of nori filled with loose rice and the traditional dipping sauce, wasabi and pickled ginger.

The flavours are excellent. But it’s the freshness of everything that really impressed me at a Monday lunch, so fresh that I could almost feel it doing me good. And that doesn’t happen very often.

There are also winter pies and soups, waffles, she says, are a house specialty and the coffee, I’m told, is top notch.

It really is a delightful little place, a very welcome addition to the city luncheon scene and deserves to do well.

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