Cancel your plans, Sydney, Acme is launching a Saturday brunch service beginning 18 February.
The idea sprang from chef Mitch Orr's takeover of Auto Lab at The Old Clare hotel last year, during which he served up Filipino-style sausage and egg sandwiches and garlicky rice bowls with barbecue pork neck and pickles. "I've always felt there hasn't been enough Asian-leaning breakfast offerings around town," says Orr. "Not that I can f--k with Boon, but you know."
Kicking off at 11am and stretching until the supremely civilised hour of 2.30pm, the four-course $50 set menu features a snappy fruit dish, that killer sandwich, a choice of three main courses and then something sweet to finish - at the moment it's looking like salty-sweet pretzel and choc chip cookies made by Moon Park's Ben Sears, who's joined the good ship Acme while he sizes up his next move.
The team is "keeping things pretty familiar" for the main course with roast pumpkin with coffee brown butter, steamed leather jacket with spring onion dressing, and fried chicken with waffles made from ube, a purple Filipino sweet potato, as contenders.
Fried chicken and ube waffle.
Keen-eyed Acme fans may note the absence of the restaurant's signature pasta. (Who wouldn't want macaroni with pig's head and egg to start their day?) But the team is looking forward to the chance to dust off some spaghetti-less ideas they've been toying with. A proper Sydney brunch can't exist without drinks, and Acme co-owner Ed Loveday is on it with breakfast Martinis, tea-infused vodka and fresh juice. "I guess we'll also do coffee," says Orr. "And definitely tea."
"If the demand's there we'll think about getting out of bed earlier and opening at 10am," says Orr, "but we can cross that bridge if we come to it."
Acme brunch, 11am-2.30pm Saturdays from 18 February, 60 Bayswater Rd, Rushcutters Bay, NSW,weareacme.com.au.