This is one of our favourite places in Melbourne: the genial atmosphere, the amazing and tireless host Mr Rahimi, and of course so much food you struggle to get into the car home without loosening the belt. This is the best Afghan food you'll get in Australia, with many of my Afghan and Middle Eastern friends flocking here too, along with a tonne of us whities smashing down the most tender lamb skewers youre ever likely to witness. I'm so full I can barely move! go for banquet number 1 and prepare to inhale....FOOD!
First stop was to suss out what the hell a Bodega was...yes, that's right, I had no idea. What a idjut! So, with my knuckles firmly dragging on the ground I consulted the amazing dictionary.com and found it was a grocery store. Or a wines hop. Or a warehouse for storing aged wine. Which makes sense has Lamaro seems to have quite the cellar (and probably grocery store and wines hop). The place itself is lake an old hotel which has been spruced up for its fancy South Melbourne clientele. They've got a lovely big fire, decent ambiance, and a general well to do feel. The food is brilliant, the most expensive steak on the menu a whopping $180 for an equally baffling 900gm steak. I simply cant eat that much cow! Instead we went for:
- Mackeral, horseradish cream, cape shank vegetables
- Wood fired octopus, potato, broad beans and squid ink (is that squid pee?)
- 350g o'connor flank steak pasture fed cow
- sweet potato ice cream sandwich, dulce de leche...kind of like salted caramel...but the ice cream was surprisingly brilliant! Look like mini hot dogs!
From South Melbourne Market I give you a fancy egg and bacon roll. Simplicity. The bacon is smokey and thick cut which means you're not chomping into some cheap stuff you can get from Aldi - which I have at home in fridge, am not knocking Aldi!
Tea & Champagne on a Friday off from work. Good day indeed! We smashed into a breakfast bun after that with some trepidation as egg whites, the enemy, were ensconced within...its just the texture, yuck! But all was well, egg cooked over-easy and chucked into a brioche with sausage and cheese. Winner! The much vaunted lobster role was disappointing - spend all that money on lobster then cock it up by putting chives and other rubbish all over it so you can barely taste anything. Still, tea was all right!
The keen observer will notice the lack of night. This is called 'day'. Far less people and you have the added bonus of being able to see what you're eating - huzzaahh! You'd be lucky to get change for a $10 for most of the asian delights on offer, which didn't stop my girlfriend trying to wrestle the piggies into some bread - delicious skewers by hoy panoy!
This small French place has the most amazing Welsh Rarebit seen outside anywhere that doesn't have at least 11 L's in its name. Unfortunately for me they didn't have it yesterday - boo hiss!! The croque monsieur was tasty though and the Melbourne cafe favourite of avocado smash with feta and a dash of pumpkin seeds was decent too. They also have a great way of serving tea from a pot which has a bit if Gaelic charm. As for my Welsh Rarebit, I shall keep dreaming of the land of rain so horizontal its like a running lake. Rest easy on your laurels Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerwchwynrombwllllantysiliogogogoch!
The best bang for your buck steak we've found in Melbourne, although even then its an expensive hunk of cow. The 500gm wagu for $50 is too much moo, yet we ordered two and gave it a crack...neither of us finished. Two days on, Ive been dreaming of getting a massage and eating grass....mooooo!!!!