227 The Parade Norwood SA 5067
The Aviary Dessert Kitchen is newly opened on the Norwood Parade and upon entry offers an avian shabby-chic theme which is instantly warm and inviting. While one of us thought that the lamp shades looked like the inside of a vacuum cleaner it is obvious there has been some real thought and heart put into the theme of this cafe. There were six of us who entered without a booking on a Thursday evening and we were asked to wait while there was a little bit of bumbling around to accommodate us. The wait time was filled with us oogling the dessert cabinet and causing the waiting staff to get cloths to wipe up the drool.
Once lead upstairs to our table were surpised to find that there is no table service, so once our decisions were made we trundeled back down to make our orders. You can order and pay for your own selection so this fixes any issues with seperating bills which is always nice. The menu offered a huge range of exciting desserts and a great drinks selection. There is no liquor license at the Aviary.
Drinks were typical hot chocolates, coffees and teas as well as milkshakes. The hot sweet drinks were served in a rather odd looking mugs that were difficult to hold as the drinks were too hot. After using google-goggle we established that they were mini bed pans and this gave us much childish pleasure for about 2 minutes and then we all boffed about how the milk might have been burnt in frothing. That said, the drinks tasted fine and while eventually were consumed they were ignored once the dessert arrived.
Banana Cake, Rhubarb Trifle Crumble and Lemon, Lime and Bitters dishes were beautifully presented and placed in front of us. They were like little pieces of art and nearly too pretty to destroy with our spoons. The Banana Cake was so-so but the other two were amazing. The reaction of the ‘non-sweet-tooth’ of the group, Liam, was a focal point for all of us awaiting his reaction. He was in heaven and we all regretted not getting the same dessert. It looked like a piece of bread but it was this creamy indescribable citrus dish that you need to order to understand. The real ‘sweet-tooth’ of this team, Jarred, ordered the Trifle and described it between mouthfuls as ‘simply stunning, the layers of jam sponge, apple rhubarb compote, custard and vanilla ice cream set off all these different explosions of flavour with temperature and texture changes which kept each spoonful surprising’. Again, the Banana Cake looked a treat but was a bit so-so in the end, although if you like thick cream and spongey cake it might be your bag.
The ambience was okay and does not following the same intimate plan of Spats or Elephant Walk as this is a more open and echoey establishment. The lighting was dim and possibly romantic although we probably ruined that mood by oohing and ahhing at each other’s food rather loudly. The late night dessert bars are now becoming more common in Adelaide and you don’t need to have eaten out to then go enjoy this type of treat. There is no reason why you cannot eat at home and then sneak out for some late night sugar in a cute cafe for a wind-down before bed.
The average price for dessert was about $11.50 and drinks were standard tea and coffee prices. Some may say it is on the pricey side but once you get your dessert it seems justifiably so. If you want to get a real sweet fix the Aviary is for you.
We give: 7 out of 10 sugar cubes for this one.