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Market on Malvern (CLOSED)

Restaurants, Cafés Prahran
4 out of 5 stars
Photograph: Francine Schaepper
Photograph: Francine Schaepper

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

It’s like Christmas for the gluten averse every day at this Prahran café

Gluten-free bagels that don’t suck. If that’s not enough to send the coeliacs, gluten-intolerant and fructose-intolerant among us racing to Market on Malvern, we don’t know what will.

But that’s not the only thing Prahran’s latest café prides itself on. They’ve got  FODMAP-friendly smoothies and four non-dairy alternatives to go with their Allpress coffee (soy, almond, rice and coconut milk). There’s also gluten-free red velvet pancakes and vegan pho. All up, Market on Malvern is a smorgasbord for the dietarily challenged. Praise be!

The café is an extension of Beingwell Healthcare, a wellness centre housed in a heritage-listed building that offers, among many things, diagnostic testing for people with gut issues. As a result Market on Malvert retains a somewhat clinical atmosphere – although this is mitigated by the artificial fireplace and the vertical wall garden in the wood-panelled waiting room, which doubles as one half of the café. Unlike its bustling neighbour Hobba a few doors down, Market on Malvern is quiet and serene, and there’s a courtyard peppered with tables for warmer weather. 

The café is the brainchild of Dr Anthony Yeuong, who collaborates with dieticians, nutritionists, naturopaths and chefs to research and validate the inclusion of every item on the menu. With David Selex of former Nobu fame as the café’s consulting chef, the menu is a veritable treasure trove for those more used to scouring a menu for the single item they can safely eat.

It’s a mostly vegetarian selection, and though it includes faddish chia puddings and golden turmeric lattes, Dr Yeuong is keen to distance his medically researched café from the broader clean eating trend that relies on appearances over substance. 

The toasted gluten-free bagel is the star of the ‘MOM Breakfast’ – the equivalent of a big breakfast that also happens to be dairy free. The bagel is less dense and sweet than the real thing, but its lightness and seeded texture works in its favour when paired with two fried eggs, dabs of kale pesto and smoky confit mushrooms. You have the option of getting your MOM Breakfast with turkey chipolatas or roast salmon, with the latter offering more bang for your buck – it’s a very generous serve of crisp-skinned fish. At $24, the MOM Breakfast is certainly a touch expensive, but other cafés will charge you a gluten-free premium anyway and the post-meal comfort is priceless.

You can also get your bagel toasted with eggs of your choice plus spiced avocado, feta and grains; sherry roast beetroot, beetroot pesto and smashed avocado; or confit mushrooms with goat's cheese and kale pesto. 

A 100 per cent gluten-free café helmed by a team dedicated to devising dishes suitable for every intolerance imaginable won’t go amiss in a city that was recently crowned the food allergy capital of the world. And the fact that the bagels taste as good as they do is the real miracle on Malvern.


Address: 388 Malvern Rd
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 7.30am-7pm; Sat, Sun 8am-4pm
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