I can already hear you quip "but the bookshop-cum-cafe has been done before!". So what's so new about the offerings at Muse?
Paul and Dan, owners of Muse, invited a small group of us to lunch to sample the menu, learn about the kitchen's philosophy, and find out exactly what Muse will be offering the residents of Canberra. They boldly invited us to review our experience 'warts and all', but in all honesty, Muse is completely without lumps and bumps.
Situated on the ground floor of the East Hotel, Muse features a split-level design, and comprises a small but excellent bookshop on the lower level that is light-filled and airy. The restaurant is slightly elevated above the bookshop, and divided by minimalist hand-made hanging bookshelves in a warm timber. It's a clever design; upon entering the restaurant from the front entrance, the symmetry of the tables, banquettes and light fixtures draws the eye through to the wall of books and just invites you to peruse their selection.