Tag Archives: Steak

The Court House Carb-Fix

14 Jun

Like most people with 2 eyes and a heart beat, Monday’s are my most dreaded day of the week. It is the one day for the past few months that I am generally bored, hungover, and left to my own groggy devices (as I have to work by myself). So when I have all day to think about where Z and I are going to drown my sorrows of the boring day, by 6 oclock, I’m literally dying from anticipation for… this week… PIZZA!

As I ploughed across town to Carlton, I’d almost reached my wine/pizza filled Utopia, only to receive a call from my delightful DDO partner. “Hey, JP and I are going to join you for dinner… so we’re going to have to change your dinner plans!” You see, normally, this wouldn’t be a problem. I love N. And JP. But given his recent ‘must eat grapefruit before each meal/No-Carb/only consume meat and salad diet’, our original plan for wine and pizza at D.O.C ,which I was so highly anticipating was canned!

I begrudgingly continue driving (I use the term driving rather loosely… it’s a good thing Monday’s a generally quiet on the roads) to our new meeting place, The Court House in North Melbourne. I arrive to a chipper JP, Z and N and pretty much sulk until my wine is poured. (YEP! I made the first 20 minutes of our dinner EXCRUCIATINGLY painful as I sat in a fit of Pizza Deprived Rage). Then we ordered, (Z; bless her cotton socks made sure she ordered me some french fries to semi cure my carb craving) I got a little boozey (off 2 sniff’s of wine…) and I totally forgot why I was being a sulky little shit!!

We’d found ourselves a nice table in the deserted back room of the bar, which suited us nicely. Although please excuse my super poor quality photos…my iPhone camera is an absolute FART and has no flash… but hopefully you get the idea…

To start we ordered the Charcuterie Platter, which came with a nice selection of meats, a terrine of the day, some cornicons and pickled greens all served with bread. As a general rule, Wagyu ANYTHING is A-OK with me!! This Wagyu Bresola did not disappoint. All the cured meats were of a good sliced thinness, and were sufficiently salty and flavoursome.

Kitchen charcuterie selection; Fratelli Galloni Prosciutto di Parma, Moondarra wagyu bresaola, Seven Hermanos gran reserva jamon, Duck Terrin and Cornicons $26

The only disappointment for me was the Terrine, which today was a duck and pork terrine. Hearing these 2 animals in the same sentence (better yet served on the same plate) alludes to instant satisfaction. This unfortunately was a little on the dry side…

Shoe string Fries and Aoli $8

Thankfully there were plenty of other meats to go round and before we knew it, we were onto our second bottle of wine just in time for our mains to arrive. First to arrive were the shoe string fries. It was a tough decision choosing between the fries or the potatoes roasted in duck fat. But I think, given my previous display of childish behaviour, keeping it simple with the shoestring fries was an appropriate choice! (Well played Z! But don’t think I didn’t get what you were hinting at…)

Our meals followed shortly afterwards, but this generous bowl of fries was pretty damn tasty! Really crispy, salty and the aoli was nice and creamy too. Such a moorishly great taste bud starter for the main event!

As mentioned earlier, JP can really only eat meat at the moment… well… he ALWAYS generally eats the meat/steak option anyways so I guess it’s not too much of a change. Both he and Z opted for the Porterhouse Steak which comes served with mash, rocket and red wine sauce. They both arrived on a big bed of mash potato’s (as did each our dishes) and the waiter followed quickly after with the selection of mustards.

Porterhouse Steak mash, rocket & red wine sauce $24

JP is very good with his sharing, so we all did the sharesy’s. From the chunk that I tasted, this was a well made piece of meat. Seared on the outer, and still juicy and tender on the inside. It doesn’t really look it in this (really bad) picture, but the size is rather decent… Z seemed to struggle towards the end of hers, so its really no surprise she left complaining about her food baby, considering that meat sized hunk of mash.

Pork & fennel sausages, mash, onion gravy $19

Noel’s fancy Bangers & Mash looked a little lack lustre, but was surprisingly really flavoursome. Much like a cover of a book, you can’t always judge a dish by its appearance. Although tasting a bite of sausage was pretty much enough. It was tasty… but i was pretty much bored after that taste. Lucky for me I didn’t order that…

Beef Burgandy Pie, with mash and red wine sauce $19

Although I can’t say my choice was ALL that much better!! Taste wise it was fine!! Beef Burgandy… what’s not to like!?! It must have been all that anticipation for pizza/anxiety over changed dinner plan/sulking, that made me make such a weird choice in meal! Why the HELL did I order a $19 pie!… that is served with Mash… I don’t eat mash!! Anyway, regardless of my absolute brain fart, I guess the pie was meaty and hearty. I probably wouldn’t order it again though (here or at another establishment)… EVER!!

Thankfully, although I didn’t get to fill my Pizza Craving, I DID get to spend an evening with my 3 favourite people, with some great wine, good banter and what seemed like an abundance of Mash!! Not what I’d anticipated for my Monday night wind down, but highly enjoyable and sorrows were drowned non the less.

 

The Court House

86-90 Errol Street
North Melbourne VIC 3051
(03) 9329 5394

Advertisements

Bob’s Steak & Chop

30 Apr

April is a busy time for us every year – in no small part due to a number of birthdays, in particular that of JP’s who insists on a full ‘week’ of birthday specialness every year. This year Bob’s Steak & Chop – freshly imported from Dallas, Texas – opened just in time to ring in JP’s birthday.  Located in the Docklands, presumably because there is plenty of space for a large American steak house, Bob’s is not necessarily what you would picture a Texan steak house to be.  There is no mechanical bull, no tacky ranch interiors and certainly no half dressed cowgirl behind the bar.  Its the total opposite with its high ceilings, wood panelled interiors, floor to ceiling glass, and an impressive glass cellar which spans the two floors in the centre of the dining room.  Waiters, dressed in pristine white with black ties, certainly look the part – whether they know what’s going on is another matter, as we find throughout the night.

Seated at our rather large table – presumably to make enough room for the large American sized meals – we are served promptly by our waiter who also doubles as sommelier.  Lucky for us JP knows a thing or two about wines, and with the wine list featuring a number of good Australian wines, we don’t need to rely on the waiter/sommelier (who by the way is nice enough, and probably the only one there who knows what is going on).

The menu, as one would expect, is focused on steak, with a few chops (veal, lamb, pork) and a smattering of seafood options.  The steaks come with a choice of fries, baked or skillet potatoes.  There is also a good selection of sides – we tried them all – including creamed corn, creamed spinach and onion rings.  So far so good.

Crab Cake

Prawn Platter

However with the arrival of entrees, the newness of the joint shows – the waiters serving the entrees not only do not know who ordered what, but they also don’t seem to really know what they are serving.  After a little kerfuffle we finally sort out what is what and plates are served to the rightful owners.  JP ordered the crab cake – which was nice enough, not very exciting.  A couple of us tried the prawns – done 3 ways.  Again, nothing to write home about.  At this point, I must say I am disappointed with the portions which are not exactly Texan sized.

The Porterhouse

Next come the steaks – and unfortunately with it comes the confused kerfuffle that came with the entrees – except this time, it was much more difficult to distinguish the different steaks from each other.

Scotch Fillet

After much to-ing and fro-ing we finally identify the different cuts of steak and their rightful owners and can finally dig in – and we were not disappointed.  You can tell a good piece of steak from the first cut into the juicy meat – and the meat at Bob’s is fantastic.  Cooked to perfection it is served simply on a white plate, no other embellishment needed.  I chose the porterhouse which was succulent and juicy, with just the right amount of marbling through the meat so that is wasn’t sinewy and chewy, and the skillet potatoes came with a rich gravy – very hearty and warming.  Judging by all the clean plates, everyone enjoyed their steak.

Key Lime Pie

Marble Cheesecake

Moving onto desserts, we were looking forward to volcanic ice cream sundaes and mountainous cheesecake.  But alas, no oversized desserts here.  Rather, there is some very plain looking key lime pie and marbled cheesecake.  A nice touch was the slice of chocolate cake for the birthday boy, complete with sparklers.

So, whilst there were more than a few hiccups with the service (to be expected with a new establishment), the quality of the steak will bring us back to Bob’s at least once more, and hopefully by then the hiccups are gone.

Bob’s Steak & Chop

737 Bourke Street

Melbourne

Steaks n Scrabble at The Terminus

29 Mar

It’s a friday night!  Which means I’ve finally made it through my roller coaster of emotions of a week.  So I give in to those Ants in the Pants and meet my friend Z and L at The Terminus for a Friday Night Feed.  Z and I arrive to find little L already perched at a nice big table in the main cosy dining/drinks areas that is not too rowdy and crowded (but not eerily desolate either).

I’d been to this pub a few times now, (more when N used to live in Northcote) and each time I leave feeling pretty satisfied.  The menu offers a range of typical pub fare: chicken parma, Wagyu burger, fish and chips as well as oysters and starters and salads, as well as options a little more sophisticated than your average pub: lobster risotto, beetroot salad and braised octopus.  But most importantly, (and the main reason I am here) they have an impressively large steak offering with a range of Grain Fed, Grass Fed and Dry Aged (served with salad, fries/hand cut chips and your choice of sauce).

the beginning of our dirty scrabble

So given my rough week, and the onset of a slight chill in the air, there was only one thing I was craving!  Tonight called for a hunk of meat on a plate!!! All 3 of us couldn’t go past the impressive steak menu so we all went with steaks.

In the mean time, we somehow got talking about Words With Friends – and how much of an inconsistent fart of a game it is – when L managed to quietly excuse herself, only to reappear holding a box of Scrabble.  “Who’s up for a game of Dirty Scrabble?”

So with wines on the go and steaks on the way this night was quickly becoming a fun sexy time!

L and I decided to go with the Grain Fed Sirloin which after consulting the friendly bar staff, I was assured this was a slightly longer chunk of steak, with a bit of fat on the side.  I like my steak rare, with horseradish cream and LOTS of hot mustard and french fries.

250g Sirloin – Darling downs, Qld 150 days grain fed ($34)

It was a pretty good looking piece of cow!  I immediately slice it open to assess the chef’s skills, to reveal a perfectly red centre, sealed slightly on top.  Well done chef! That is one good piece of rare cooked steak! Juicy, tender and by no means over cooked and grey.  The horseradish cream was beautifully balanced, smooth with a bit of bite that didn’t send my sinuses into overdrive – that is the job of the Hot English mustard.  I was then offered a range of mustards to accompany my steak.  I think you can safely assume by now which I went for.

Z went for the Wagyu Rump, rare and with horseradish cream which looked equally delicious (well, obviously we had a little swapsy.) I’m not sure how she felt about mine, but I may or may not have had a little food envy.

200g Wagyu rump - Rangers Valley, NSW 650 days grain fed ($33)

The Wagyu is a little more compact in size with a little more height.  But don’t let this petite little piece of flavour bomb deceive you.  My morsel of Wagyu was deliciously rich and tender, again cooked to pinky perfection while being encased by a slightly seared surface.

Dirty scrabble

Steaks devoured, scrabble complete and whole lot of shits and giggles.  Like any good roller coaster ride, you enter wanting it to be over with but leave wanting more.  Thank you Terminus!  You have definitely left me wanting more!!

And in case you were wondering, I won the game of scrabble!

The Terminus  492 Queens Parade Clifton Hill

Ph +613 9481 3182

http://www.terminus.com.au

Stefan’s Charcoal Grill

25 Mar

Balwyn is not exactly a place where you would find any foodie – in fact, lets face it there really isn’t anything much in Balwyn at all (I will leave it at that – and for those Balwynites reading, I too am a Balwyn resident so I do know what I am talking about).

However there are the odd gems in the locality, and Stefan’s Charcoal Grill is one of them.  For those readers wanting a write up of somewhere trendy, edgy and full of hipsters please stop reading now (go to any of the other blog entries on this site), because Stefan’s is the exact opposite to all of that and doesn’t apologise for the fact that it is all about steak – and that’s about it.

Serving up the usual 3 course meal with salad for around $70, Stefan’s is a no-nonsense steak house and its advantage over similar places like Vlado’s is that its less expensive, allows BYO (although they do have a very extensive wine list) and there are no cows staring back at you whilst you eat.  For those who want something a bit special there is the Black Angus or even Wagyu at market prices.  For those who don’t want steak (why are you even reading this) there is a chicken option (gross!).

House made Cevapcici (skinless sausages)

Green Salad & Bread

To start there is the choice of house made chevapcici (skinless sausages) or vegetable soup – which is actually not so much as a soup but a broth with two tiny pieces of carrot and/or celery floating in it.

I recommend the chepvacici. The sausages go well with what looks to be supermarket bread and little packets of Western Star butter.  The green salad is simple, but fits the bill of balancing out all the meat that is about to be consumed.

Next comes the steak – which is served with chips, unless you ask for the baked jacket potato (which I recommend).  On this occasion I had opted for the Porterhouse (medium rare, more on the rare side) – which is a diversion from my usual Eye Fillet.  My other co-conspirators also chose the Porterhouse option with the exception of JP who went for the Angus New York cut (700g).  The meat is expertly cooked by Stefan himself on the grill, and is succulent and juicy.  There’s something to be said for the satisfying simplicity of a well cooked piece of meat, which needs little else than some horseradish and mustard as accompaniment.  The Porterhouse was delicious, but my personal preference is for the Eye Fillet – which is a smaller, leaner piece of meat.

Porterhouse - cooked rare

The Angus - New York cut, with hot english mustard

Judging by the clean plates, my friends enjoyed their meat too.

Apple Strudel

Walnut Crepe

Lastly for dessert there is a choice of Apple Strudel, Black Forest Cake or crepes (lemon, strawberry, walnut or banana) with ice cream.

Having sampled all of the choices, my vote goes to the walnut crepes, although the strudel is also a good choice (and it doesn’t have sultanas).

Trendy, fine dining this is not – but if you are looking for a well cooked piece of meat, in pleasant (if not a little bit daggy) settings, then Stefan’s is your pick.

 

 

 

 

Stefan’s Charcoal Grill

305 Whitehorse Road

Balwyn

http://stefanscharcoalgrill.yolasite.com/