I no longer have "my finger on the pulse" of inner-west life. It's a fact. The only way I ever find out about great new places these days is if I'm told about them by other people (or read about them on other people's blogs).
I blame my finger's inability to find the pulse on a few things.
Firstly, I'm getting older. Next month I'll definitely be closer to 40 than 30, eep (don't tell anyone, ok)? Secondly, I'm now an outer-westie, rather than an inner-westie so I am geographically challenged. And lastly, there is just so much happening in the inner-west that I probably couldn't keep track of it all if I was 20 and lived smack bang in the middle of Newtown.
The only reason I knew that the Carriage Works even has a cafe is because someone cooler and hipper than me told me about it. Apparently Bay 16 Cafe has been installed in the foyer of the Carriage Works for a very long time now. Who knew? Not me that's for sure.
Today I take myself out for a walk around the neighborhood close to work as I'm finding it hard, really really hard, to be back in the office after nearly four weeks of leave over Christmas. The Carriage Works seems like as good a place as any to have a sandwich and reminisce to myself about holidays' long gone.
The lunch menu at Bay 16 Cafe is pretty simple and offers a selection of sandwiches, salads, cakes and coffees.
It feels quite strange, and yet very relaxing, to be at the Carriage Works on a day where nothing much is happening other than a few workmen fixing things in the vacuous building, random office workers having a bite to eat and a few 'arty farty' people wandering about looking creative. The place is just as sleepy as I feel and it's lovely.
I decided on a sandwich of Lemon Pepper Chicken with Haloumi, Parsley and Herb Dressing ($8.50). Because the bread is a lovely, thick sourdough the waitress suggests I get it toasted as it tastes much better toasted. I think everything tastes better toasted so happily go along with her suggestion.
The sandwich is lovely and the chicken has a fresh, zesty flavour. Of course anything that comes with Haloumi is a winner with me. That said, and as the innards show, the sandwich is just a fraction too slick with oil which is a problem when my napkin blows away in the breeze and I'm left wiping my fingers on my handbag as I cannot find any tissues within!
For good measure I throw in a glass of freshly squeezed Orange Juice for ($3.50). The OJ is cool and refreshing. And, for you pulp haters out there...their juice is pulp free and as silky smooth as...well as something that is silky smooth.
After I finish lunch I go for a wander around outside and notice a little herb and vegetable garden growing in tubs just outside the entrance to Bay 16. It's nice to think that some fresh, homegrown rocket was in my sandwich.
For opening hours of Bay 16 Cafe check out their website.
The Carriage Works can be found at 245 Wilson Street, Redfern/Eveleigh. Bay 16 Cafe is located in the Carriage Works foyer.