I’m not a princess, I have very few expectations of restaurants but I do like the little things done well. My pet peeve of a number of restaurants is elaborate dishes, GDP of a small country spend on decor and furnishings and a wine list rivalling War and Peace only for it to be 40 degrees outside and I’m served room temperature, tepid water.
Hammer and Tong has a reputation, I generally don’t like reputations and like to form my own opinion, but the amount of people raving about the place couldn’t be ignored. We decided to give it a go and arrived at about 10.00am to be seated straight away (a real luxury in Melbourne, we’ll save my tirade about restaurant booking systems for a later date, watch out Chin Chin and Attica!). You can’t help but be impressed on first impressions, the space and interior is typically Melbourne, modern with an old, industrial, warehouse feel to it. We were seated, given menu’s and ice cold water, perfect to counter the hot weather, so far so good! The menu was fairly limited with some fairly unusual concoctions, think breakfast ramen with hen’s egg, oyster mushrooms, bacon dsahi and spring onions.
I struggled to order as I often do but opted left of field with a soft shell crab burger, Jax ordered the tomato fondue bruschetta, basil and buffalo boccocini. My burger came and it was spectacular; the brioche bun was sweet and toasted, asian slaw had a good hit of coriander and the crab was crunchy, moist and delicious, I loved this dish.
On the other hand Jax’s bruschetta came, it was burnt to a crisp and I almost felt bad watching her grimace her way through it whilst I ploughed into my work of art. I had a taste when she called it a day (as scripted, one of the real upsides to having a girlfriend) and unfortunately was pretty disappointed myself, all I could taste was ash from the cremated bread and the tomato sauce tasted sweet like the topping from a cheap pizza. My advice, choose wisely!
Price – 8
Quality of food – 7
Atmosphere – 8
If you liked this post, take a look at my post on St Ali in South Melbourne; https://pleasesirbyoliver.wordpress.com/2014/02/04/st-ali-a-turning-point-in-a-mans-life/