Cru is a delight. A din­ing expe­ri­ence that recalls images of a youth find­ing the first dan­de­lion of the spring and wist­fully blow­ing off the pollen into the forth­com­ing sea­son of warmth…

Wait. No, it’s not. It’s not like that it all. Cru is just really good food and really good cof­fee and really, really good wine.

Nes­tled on the cor­ner block of Glen­fer­rie and Cotham roads, Cru has been gain­ing a rep amongst res­i­dents of Kew as a new local favourite. Owned and run by four mid­dle aged pro­fes­sion­als, Cru is the man­i­fes­ta­tion of over 2000 col­lec­tive din­ing expe­ri­ences. I sat down in the can­dle­light on a frosty Wednes­day evening with co-owner Annie Rose (pic­tured below) – part sex­ual edu­ca­tion teacher, part mother of three, total badass.

Cru has been built on a shit ton of expe­ri­ence from our side of the table. Hav­ing lived in Mel­bourne for most of their adult-lives, Annie, along with hus­band Peter Rose and busi­ness part­ners Robyn Blake and Andrew Pick­er­ing have eaten out a lot. So when the midlife cri­sis came knock­ing, they all decided it was time to make a splash in the Mel­bourne hos­pi­tal­ity whirlpool. And thus on the 8th day, God said, ‘let there be Cru’, and this lovechild was born.

Annie Rose.

Cru is an unpre­ten­tious cross­roads between an appre­ci­a­tion for din­ing sim­plic­ity and a sea­soned love of the finer things in life. Its menu is evi­dence of this. Dishes are named and ingre­di­ents listed, and it’s refresh­ingly devoid of wank. It is what it is. And it’s pretty darn good.

By day, Cru brings the ’20 minute wait on a table’ brunch scene to Kew — it’s all eggs on toast and Bircher muesli and spe­cial­ity cof­fees galore. It’s by night, how­ever, that Cru begins to shine.

Wine fanatic and man-about-town, Anthony D’Anna (Boc­ca­cio Cel­lars), is respon­si­ble for the cellar’s stock­ing. Around 80 dif­fer­ent wines are on offer, with a strong focus on Ital­ian and Euro­pean blends. And while you might not have any idea what makes them spe­cial — the crew at Cru (sorry, I’m sorry, I just had too) most cer­tainly will. Bar Man­ager Angus Hean knows his shit, giv­ing the in-depth low-down on every­thing from the notes of the wine to the alco­hol con­tent. He also wears a cool hat. And he makes a killer cock­tail. Taste like fresh juice, feels like drunk.

 Now, with­out mean­ing to directly insin­u­ate that the own­ers have drunk an obscene amount of fine wine over their col­lec­tive years of exis­tence — the way the bar menu works so nicely with what’s flow­ing really does sug­gest the work of func­tion­ing alco­holics. Food at night is sim­ple and effec­tive. Sar­dines with toma­toes on gar­lic sour­dough. Deli­cious. Braised pork shoul­der with gin­ger beer, pine mush­room, chest­nut and pome­gran­ate. Meaty. Cheese plat­ter. Per­fect. It’s hand­crafted glut­tony at its finest.

Eat­ing and drink­ing at Cru encour­ages the time­less rev­e­la­tion that per­haps this is what life is all about. Hedo­nism. It’s great. Stop try­ing to tell your­self oth­er­wise. Yolo etc.

 Cru Cafe/Wine Bar

916 Glen­fer­rie Rd. Kew

Cru on Urbanspoon

About the Author

South Australian born freelancer. Rides a skateboard. Looks as poor as he is. Has quite nice teeth though. Thanks Mum. You can follow him on twitter, here @henry_boles

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