• Sasa’s Café (Hawthorn)

Sasa’s is very much a café for the locals. It has its regulars and is usually busy. Sasa is Thai, but the menu is quite eclectic. The main dishes are mostly Italian and French, but a curry of the day is always available. I keep coming back for lunch because the food is consistently good and the large serves are very reasonably priced. Add in the friendliness of the staff, BYO and relaxed atmosphere and Sasa’s ticks all the boxes for a very good local café.

At my last visit I had the Roasted Mushroom & Gruyere cheese Risotto ($16.90). This dish consisted of oven roasted button mushrooms, gruyere cheese, and freshly chopped parsley. The texture of this was a highlight: the rice was perfectly cooked (cooked slightly longer than al dente so it was firm but not crunchy), the diced and braised onions still had some lovely firmness and sweetness, the mushrooms were roasted and firm, and the gruyere cheese gave the dish a wonderful creamy sweetness. Usually I would be wary of ordering a risotto at a non Italian restaurant, but this one rated as one of the best I’ve eaten.

On previous visits I’ve been with a couple of mates for a long lunch with some good BYO wines. On those occasions we get a bit carried away and have one of the cakes/desserts on offer. The desserts have always been good and have the feel of being homemade. On long lunches when we order dessert the servings are often huge as there is a reluctance to recycle desserts for the next day.

Sasa’s serves Genovese coffee. I usually have a piccolo which has a rich taste without a hint of bitterness. The locals often purchase their Genovese coffee beans from Sasa’s so they can repeat the experience of a rich creamy coffee at home.

About the Author
Michael is a food and wine connoisseur.  He also makes a delicious chocolate cake.

Sasa’s Café 
173 Riversdale Rd
Hawthorn 3122
03 9815 3885

Sasa's Cafe and fine food on Urbanspoon


  1. One of the best risotto you've had and at that price! Huge servings of cakes. Sounds like heaven. You've put the thought in my head; I'm incapable of resisting such tempting food. This one is a must try and soon too, I think. I will definitely dream about risotto and cakes tonight. Ros

  2. Thanks Ros. I am begging Michael to take me here too. Sweet dreams :)

  3. Elisa, I'm meeting a friend for brunch in the CBD. Can't decide which cafe to go to. Preferably one near Lonsdale St. What do you recommend? Thanks. Ros

  4. Hi Ros, how lovely! My favourite coffee around there is Traveller: 2/14 Crossley Street, just off Little Bourke near the top of Lonsdale. It is part of Seven Seeds and has great Colombian style coffee. Although it does not have much space to sit, nor much food. I went to the European on Spring Street for brunch a while ago and was impressed. It is not cheap but they have some interesting brunch dishes. Otherwise my favourite brunch spots are out of the city. Let me know how you go. Elisa.

    1. Sorry did not get to go there as my friend had a change of plans. Ros

  5. Thanks Elisa! I read your review of the European and I was leaning towards it. Will let you know how I go. Getting ready for a short trip to Malaysia. Can't wait to try all my favourite dishes :-)) Ros

  6. Finally went to Sasa's Cafe. I had to have the risotto and it was every bit as good as Michael's description. I savoured every mouthful of it. I was so full after the risotto that I had to share the passion fruit sponge cake with my friend. Thanks for the recommendation :-)) Another great place to eat. Ros

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