Delectable Dining – The Grosvenor Hotel

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By Jessica Williams

Follow her food adventures on Instagram: @jsallgoodthings

Standing on Brighton Road, gazing at The Grosvenor Hotel with its white façade and darkly tinted windows, you are lead to believe that this establishment – which has been serving food since the late 1800s – is just your average pub. But, if it once was, not anymore.

Rabih Yanni took over ownership and management of The Grosvenor Hotel in July 2014. He says his extensive experience in hospitality has taught him to “walk the guest’s path.” This mantra is apparent as we tour the property and its connected bottle shop – both of which have many new embellishments that make for a unique guest experience.

You will find a bain marie stocked with pizzas, and fried treats in the bottle shop’s drive through – and a selection of everyday amenities like cereal, yoghurt etc – as well as alcohol, in the shop itself. For a more boutique appeal, Yanni sells his mother’s range of hommus, baba-ganoush and labne, and stocks St Kilda’s 7 Apples gelato in dixie cups.

Back inside the Grosvenor, Yanni has introduced in-house 40-day dry-aged Victorian Angus beef; so naturally, we begin our meal with the Selection of Cured Meats ($32.00). A timber board arrives; stocked with sweet, melt-in-your-mouth San Daniele prosciutto, olives, fresh Calabrese salami maintaining a smoky and peppery bite, and Morcon: meat from the rump of a Spanish pig, which leaves your palate humming with chilli – quickly rectified with a sip of red wine.

The Grosvenor choose to serve predominantly Victorian wine and beer by the glass, and our evening entailed enjoying a glass of the Cabernet Sauvignon (from Punt Road in the Yarra Valley) in the dining room, adjacent to the cocktail bar. It is a quiet, more romantic setting than the Front Bar and outdoor terrace, which overlooks the main road.

The same menu is served throughout the restaurant; boasting pizzas, parmas, burgers, sharing plates, bar snacks, salads, desserts and more, all made using premium ingredients. Head Chef Paul Tyas is at the helm, having gained his experience working under Melbourne renowned chefs: Ian Curley and Scott Picket at The Point in Albert Park. Paul has brought the award-winning restaurant’s contemporary approach to dining to The Grosvenor menu, whilst ensuring it is still an approachable option for pub regulars and locals. We can vouch for that.

The arancini-like Cauliflower Fritters ($12.00) were a stand out, due to their crisp coating, a dusting of Grana Padano and inner béchamel filling; the herb salad with a touch of chilli and a drizzle of lemonade vinaigrette, served with gluten free, thin strands of Rice Flour Dusted Calamari ($18.00) was light and refreshing; and our side of home-made, wood-fired herb focaccia was soft but crisp. And although the avocado puree is slightly overpowering in the Cured Kingfish ($19.00), the addition of pomegranate seeds makes the dish sweet and palate cleansing. The beef that came next was the winner.

Thinly sliced, almost sweet, tantalizing medium Eye Fillet ($39.00) and a more robust, smoky medium-rare Porterhouse ($36.00) were brought to the table, alongside thrice-cooked chips ($8.00) maintaining a pillowy soft centre and spectacular crunch. A warm, juicy, Beetroot Salad ($12.00) with a generous sprinkling of shaved salted ricotta, also adds natural sweetness and a rich creamy bite to compliment the succulent, juicy meats.

We were then met with the flawlessly lavish desserts, almost too pretty to eat. Pastry Chef Daniel Grieff has transformed the pub’s sweets cabinet with homemade delicacies, nothing heavy or too sweet, and all beautifully presented. A non-conventional, yellow dome of Lemon Meringue ($10.00), Crème Brulee ($12.00) that tastes of brandy snaps and a Chocolate Gateaux ($10.00) with a thin layer of passionfruit and a Ferrero-Rocher tasting base – finished with a fresh, chocolate macaron on top, are all easily recommended. Not your average dessert cabinet! Wow-factor indeed.

The finer details of dining really have been taken care of at The Grosvenor Hotel. An exemplary experience and enjoyable evening, on all accounts.

 

The Grosvenor Hotel

10 Brighton Road, St Kilda East

(03) 9531 1542

www.grosvenorhotel.com.au

Open seven days a week for lunch and dinner from midday till late.

 

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