Django Eatery offers a taste of Montreal, minus the snow, strikes and linguistic politics. But tabernac, they got the diner-style coffee right. Words by Erin Hale. Photography by Enric Català.
In a city awash with brunches, Django Eatery bills itself as a North American breakfast place to distinguish itself from the crowd. While this may be an accurate description, it’s reminiscent of one part of North America in particular – the charmingly offbeat city of Montreal.
While many Phnom Penh residents may be familiar with Australian or American breakfasts, Montreal has its own traditions: bottomless filter coffee, crispy bacon and sides of roasted potatoes and fruit with every dish. Even the greasiest of greasy spoons will add at least one anemic orange slice to accompany a plate of eggs.
Django also offers a diner-like atmosphere, with a stand-alone building fitted out like a Western breakfast joint, with posters of both famous Djangos on the wall – the guitar-playing Django Reinhardt and the eponymous character of Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained. Outdoor space is available for children and a terrace for eating.
“I was looking for something specific on the brunch scene, which was inspired by what I found in Montreal,” says co-owner Patrick Pillon. “I couldn’t find exactly that, so we got together and we had this location in mind, and said, ‘Let’s do this’.”
Co-owner Sebastien Mezailles, adds, “We had an idea and we realised that nobody was doing it.”
Six different versions of eggs Benedict are available. Patrons can order one or two eggs, with prices running from $5 for a one egg classic to $9.75 for two eggs Norwegian-style with salmon.
Eggs Benedict Provencal ($5 for one, $6.75 for two) is the standout on the menu: caramelised onions, red and green peppers, and mushrooms sautéed in butter add delicious flavours to round out the rich and creamy Hollandaise sauce. The Chef’s Special is another solid choice: a classic Benedict with spinach, sautéed mushrooms and roasted goat cheese ($6.75 for one, $9.25 for two).
Omelettes and scrambled eggs are also available, such as the American Western Omelette (peppers, cheddar, ham) for $7.75, or scrambled eggs “A la Portuguese” with tomatoes, onions, herbs, and spices for $6.25. Then there’s the crepes, which come with banana, Nutella, homemade caramel, caramelised apples, and other sweet toppings, with prices ranging from $3.50 for one to $8.75 for two.
Another treat is Django’s dedicated juice bartender, Naron, who prepares juice by hand. Coffee purists can also find a selection of espresso-based drinks to perk them up if bottomless coffee sounds unappealing.
Django has only been open a few months, which means its owners are still tinkering with the menu. For now lunch is mostly burgers – but they are in the process of designing a hearty selection of salads. Skillets – baked pans of eggs, potatoes and cheese – may also be coming, but one Montreal-favourite will be staying off the menu: the greasiest item of all, poutine, will have to be found elsewhere.