Shoku iku, in the heart of in Northcote, is a beacon for Melbourne’s raw food and healthy eating movement. The shopfront itself is minimalist, and the dining space is commanded by clean lines, stone flooring and heavy warmth of timber furniture. Yoko Inoue, renowned Melbourne raw food chef, is the mastermind in the Shoku iku kitchen, vitamixing her way through a menu of delicious, raw food creations. Locals and visitors from afar travel to Shoku iku to dine on fresh, seasonal ingredients and Japanese-inspired technqiues. The name is Japanese for “food education”, so they’re onto a good, healthy thing here.
Shoku iku’s wintery breakfast menu takes its cues from western breakfast fare that’s styled by simple, Japanese culinary methods. There’s a short order of choices that can be easily matched with Shoku iku’s vast chalkboard of smoothies, warmed drinks and medicinal teas. Granola is a bowl of natural grains and chopped fresh fruit, all muddled together to boost the body with a hit of energy through the day. Guests can enjoy choosing a nut milk of their choice to be poured over the top.
The banana and cacao “crepes” is another option that’s healthy and energising, yet deceptively sweet and rich. The crepes are dried banana, pressed into flattened sheets to create a crepe effect. Each crepe is layered with a thick cacao cream and perfectly portioned pear and orange, balancing delicately between layers to create a stack that’s too good to disrupt. All three layers are topped with more cream and shavings of sweet, fresh coconut. Each mouthful is swallowed with sheer delight; the crepes are a rare breakfast treat to feature on such a unique menu.
Harnessing Shoku iku’s undying love of raw ingredients, a cup of warmed “energy in a cup” (cupuacu, cacao, sun warrior protein and ashwaghandha) is ordered to sip carefully as the meal leaves the belly well and truly fulfilled. All that’s left is to rush out the glass doors and embrace the day with the batteries charged and mind feeling refreshed.
Shoku iku is open Tuesday to Friday 11.30am to 4pm, Saturday 11.30am to 4pm and dinner 6pm to 9.30pm, Sunday 11.30am to 4pm. 120 High Street Northcote Victoria 3070. Phone: 0403 569 019.