Welcome to Melbourne Foodie. The blogspace of a young foodie with a passion for cooking, fine dining and quality food and produce.
Melbourne Foodie, along with the other sources I write for is my way of casually expressing and recording some of the experiences I have had for others to enjoy. I always welcome any feedback,
comments or restaurant suggestions you may have and would love to hear from you soon.
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BLOG OF THE MOMENT: I Eat Therefore I Am
Oyster has now been open for two years, and has become renowned for, amongst other things their range of freshly shucked oysters and some of the best steaks in Melbourne. The establishment itself is simple but classy, with quality fittings and smart service to match. I really am privileged to be able to dine here for just $30. You would struggle to get two courses and wine at a simple cafe for this sum. My one whinge however about the setting is the butchers paper on the tables. It really detracts from the ambience, but I believe that this is only taking place at lunchtime, for the Express lunch, to reduce costs and more easily enable two sittings.
On offer for the "Express" lunch are three fantastic entree, main and dessert choices. To start with one can choose between a 1/2 a dozen fresh oysters, salmon gravlax on a potato salad or a fantastic gnocchi dish. And for mains it is a choice of steak, pork or fish. All of which look fantastic. Desserts, including a tiramisu, are also available.
I opt for the gnocchi and steak along with a glass of red. I also order a side of chips to accompany my main.
First Course: Ricotta Gnocchi with a chicken and mushroom ragout:
Generous and delicious. I tend to steer away from Gnocchi in restaurants, but having eaten chef Joseph Vargetto's excellent pasta many times whilst he served at Number 8, I have confidence here and the dish is indeed wonderful: perfectly light pillows of gnocchi sit in a hearty ragout of the most tender braised chicken and mushrooms finished in a thick herby tomato sauce.
Main: New York Steak served minute style on a bed of crushed peas.
A very good course. The steak was seasoned well and perfectly pink inside. It is lightly crusted and sits atop a bed of fresh crushed peas. The flavour of the meat excellent, as was the intense jus surrounding it, showcasing the dish as much more than just a simple piece of steak.
Side: Hand cut French fries ($6):
A picture-perfect example of how chips should be.
The meal is finished with a good cup of coffee and I am rather impressed with the whole experience. Many discounted lunches can result in poor quality food, or diminished servings. This was certainly not the case at Oyster.
The Melbourne Food and Wine Festival ends March 8 so get yourself an express lunch booking and enjoy it while you can. Click here to download a list of participating restaurants.
Oyster offers a year-round lunch special with 2 courses and a glass of wine for $39 or 3 courses for $49. An offer which represents very good value for the quality of food on offer.
Oyster Little Bourke received a score of 15.5 out of 20 in the 2008 Age Good Food Guide and was awarded one chefs hat.
MY RATING: 15.5/20 - Food 8/10 Ambience 3.5/5 Service 4/5