Proud Mary, Melbourne


I went to Proud Mary for one reason: eat Ricotta Hotcakes served in a grand power station-looking like building. The cafe was stunning and the logo reminded me of an automobile company; all so very hipster. Coffee was popular and I was given an iPad with a list of coffee to choose from with the corresponding background of the beans but these were all a playful stunt. Something to occupy me while I waited for my hotcakes. The coffee was good but I was more taken with the blue cups and the cute stools with a extra plank to rest the feet.  Two large communal tables took up most of the cafe and I loved the relaxed crowd. Most people were having some special-looking poached eggs on toast but I was there for one thing: ricotta hotcakes, pancake’s obese cousin!

My love for hotcakes/ pancakes came much later in life. When I was young, I equated them to American food and I despised any form of Western food. I was a Congee, rice, noodles, and dumplings child. Old videos of my family holidaying in America showed a scrowling me in a petrol station surrounded by sweet Dunkin Donuts, and I was always upset unless a bowl of rice was in front of me. Wherever we hit a city, Chinese restaurants were mandatory. Scrambled eggs and sausages made me puke. Bacon, let’s not go there. I still am unale to accept American-style fried-to-death streaky bacon. God knows when I began to accept Western food but I reckon I started to like pancakes as they remind me of cakes. Sinking my teeth into the slow pillow texture.


But anyway back to my hotcakes at Proud Mary. I ordered the Ricotta Pancakes with Caramelised Pears, Rose Mascarpone & Toasted Almonds and waited.


When I first saw the waitress holding a plate walking towards me, fear came over. It was mammoth; three puffy golden brown circles of pancakes stacked on each other, and the pears precariously hanging on, one even toppled over. It looked like the whole tower of flour was going to collapse before I could snap a picture but it obediently held on. Each hotcake was as solid as the next and filled with large cubes of ricotta cheese. When the hotcakes were still warm, the cheese oozed out when I wielded my knife and fork into it. The caramelised pears were strangely not sweet and provided the much needed health component to it. The cream on the side was lightly infused with a rose essence. The floralness did not threaten to overpower and helped to cut across the heaviness of the ricotta and flour. What a genius!

After a long time, the plate was finally clean. This was it. I came, I order, and I unabashedly conquered. I was stuffed but so blissed out for a while after.


My only complaint: not enough syrup for me to soak the hotcakes.


PS: Hot water with lemon costs a bomb here.


The hotcakes costs AUD$17.50, pricey but it was a hulk of a plate, polish everything off the plate and money will be well spent!

If you ever crave hotcakes, Proud Mary will dutifully satiate that craving for you.


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