Clean-cut, but with plenty of homey warmth, Meet & Talk on Fumin Lu is one of our favourite new cafes in the city. A matte black ceiling carves crisp edges into the whitewashed brick walls, while fabric booth-seating and wooden tabletops fill the gap between the glass-paned entrance and the bronze-plated rear countertop.
Across one wall, cursive lettering reads: ‘Yes we have WiFi, but let’s Meet ’n’ Talk to each other.’ The café is a good place for doing just that, with a relaxing atmosphere and a good range of dependable drinks and casual food. You’ll find sandwiches, salads and a satisfying dish of pesto pasta (52RMB) – steaming, al dente penne slathered in bright green sauce and studded with tender mushrooms, chicken and a fat cube of creamy feta cheese.
Beverages include smoothies, teas and coffee drinks like a ‘crispy caramel latte’ (38RMB), a treat with sweetness to match a milkshake beneath a surface of scalded sugar resembling the cap of a crème brûlée. But the biggest draw at Meet & Talk may be that breakfast is served all day, with options including eggs benedict (48RMB) and a platter of eggs-in-the-hole served with cheddar cheese, chicken sausage, smoked ham, homemade potato chips, yoghurt and fruit (62RMB).
The well-executed eggs Florentine (52RMB) is served with tender wilted spinach and sliced mushrooms atop multi-grain toast, all smothered in rich hollandaise (52RMB). Delicious, any time of the day.