i only recently realised that ‘le petit prince’ (french for ‘the little prince’) is a famous novella written in 1943 by aristocrat, writer + poet antione de saint-exupery. the book has sold almost 14 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 250 languages as well as braille – making it the 3rd most-translated book in the world (thanks wikipedia!). the story line sounds enchanting – a young prince who falls to earth from his asteroid and becomes stranded in the desert, longing for his beloved flower that he was left behind… i think i’ll be adding this one to the christmas gift list for my nieces this year!
le petit prince, of the café variety, is equally charming … the café was originally opened in 2012 by artisan bakers moisa leouzon and adam diamond. whilst i didn’t have the chance to visit under the original owners, i understand that the ‘le petit prince’ theme was prominent throughout (including the menu). the café has only recently changed hands and owners susan and melissa are beginning to put their own touch on things – there are still some lovely child-like touches on the walls, but the books’ theme does not come through as strongly and certainly the menu has changed, both in looks and in style, now boasting a slightly more asian-brunch influence.
one thing is for sure – these guys are in a prime spot! a beautiful outdoor footpath dining area under a gorgeous leafy green tree, just around the corner from popular high st in armadale. it’s a quiet and enviable spot. with only a few tables inside, outside is definitely the place to be when the weather is good!
coffee options include independent speciality blend coffee supreme – a bold and vibrant taste, locally produced in abbotsford, as well as in wellington new zealand. cold drinks on offer include smoothies and fresh juices… this morning we went for an always-good fresh grapefruit juice.
it was a gorgeous spring day this particular sunday, and with a summer menu about to launch we were definitely keen on trying one of the new menu items.
granola with caramelised pineapple, nuts, coconut + pandan panna cotta
this is a particularly stunning granola – and a lovely variation to the usual milk/yoghurt varieties. the pandan panna cotta was well-set and had a lovely tropical flavour which left me thinking of coconuts, cocktails and beachside pools. the mango puree was fresh and vibrant, and lifted the overall flavours of the dish as well as adding a more liquid-y element to mix with the granola. all in all, a stand-out… both in looks and taste!
mushrooms + morcilla: spanish morcilla, poached egg, smashed avocado with mixed mushrooms
i think my taste-buds were struggling to switch from the above-mentioned granola and panna cotta to this much more bold savoury dish. on their own, the elements were all exceptional – beautiful seasonal mushrooms, a creamy avocado and the dominating flavour of the spanish morcilla (blood sausage). however, all together this didn’t quite work for me – a case of sometimes less is more perhaps? i have shaynna blaze in my head saying ‘when you think you’re done, stop and take one item away’.
overall, our brunch experience at le petit prince was ‘bien’ <french: nice, lovely>… a cafe in the process of forging its own identity and transitioning into its own new style in a space that was once so french-influenced. they’ve certainly nailed the location, location, location… and if they keep churning out dishes like the pandan panna cotta granola, this is sure to be a summer favourite for locals!
verdict: a charming little prince, stamping a new identify with a colourful and vibrant asian-inspired menu
(note: inlovewithbrunch dined as a guest of le petit prince, however all remarks and reviews are honest and genuine)