The Great Provider
42a Marine Parade
03 9525 5855
I really want to say nice things about the Great Provider. It’s in a great location. The staff are incredibly polite and helpful. The thing is, is that the food is pretty crap. I’ve been for breakfast twice, and been disappointed both times.
As above, it’s in a great location overlooking the St Kilda Marina. It’s a lovely spot to just sit and hang out. In line with this, the menu is pricey. It’s also really big on adjectives. You have to put some thought into deciphering them and work out what it is you’re ordering.
Both the dishes we ordered were uninspiring. The food was bland, and the servings were on the small side.
It is easy to get a car park and a table. And they do make a good coffee. That’s all I’ve got!
Okay, so I have already reviewed Cafe 57. Last time I did, I didn’t put up any photos. Last Sunday I enjoyed a lazy brunch there with friends, so I thought I might re-review, this time with some pictures. Albeit, crap ones from my iPhone.
As a rule, I get eggs for breakfast if we go out. They’re filling and healthy, and also contain the highest quality protein of any food. There are 18 essential nutrients in an egg. And if you eat less than six a week they will not affect your cholesterol. Anyhow, I broke away from my usual pattern and ordered french toast with berries and yogurt. I don’t know why, but the yogurt wasn’t anywhere to be seen. It was still tasty, and I couldn’t be bothered to complain.
Other dishes at the table were the Mediterranean breakfast, (read:omlette) the always plate-licking good shaksoka, and some humble scrambled eggs on toast.
The coffee was good and the staff were polite.
Here is the original review.
52-62 Old Princes highway
03 9769 3546
When someone mentioned ‘Slippery Jacks’ as a place to get some lunch, I thought it must be some kind of truck stop with a name like that. Slippery Jacks is in fact a new(ish) restaurant in Beaconsfield, that’s quite popular with locals.
Inside, the decor is pretty modern. It’s not a bad fit out, there are lots of dark and rich colours which make it a good night time destination. There are some rustic looking wine barrels with modern galvanised stools set up out the front. For dining, there are some cosy tables set up, as well as another area to the side for those who are just after drinks. I haven’t been passed on a Saturday, but I’ve heard it can get quite busy.
The first time I visited was back in April for lunch. We ordered a couple of entree’s, thinking they would be lunch sized. They were not. We ended up ordering a pizza as well. Everything we ordered was good, and fresh.
The second time was for dinner. I ordered the blue grenadier. Yes, this is a vegetarian blog, but there aren’t really any other good options to choose from. While there wasn’t anything wrong with the dish, it didn’t really stand out.
The desserts were better. The cheese platter was quite generous for the price. I really wanted to order the deconstructed apple crumble and see what a post-modern dessert looked like, but I was tempted by the chocolate tart with berry compote.
The chunky chips were pretty damn good. Don’t go past them as a side dish.
The staff were very friendly and helpful both times I visited. THey really didn’t leave anything to be desired in terms of customer service. I’ve read on other reviews that they push the drinks, but I didn’t find this at all.
The thing about eating in the outer suburban fringe is that choice is limited. Sure, there are plenty of places to eat around Berwick and Beaconsfield, but a lot of them do suck. Slippery Jacks would have to be the pick of the bunch.
Would I go back? Yes, simply because it’s decent food as well as close to a lot of my friends and family. Its advantages are mainly geographic. Should you go if you are a vegetarian? Well, maybe not.
Crown Casio Complex
8 Whiteman Street, Southbank
On a sunny winter’s afternoon, we stumbled into Nobu for a very late lunch. We turned up without a booking, and there was plenty of space. We got told (in the nicest possible way) that while we could stay as long as we liked, the kitchen was closing soon and we would need to order quickly.
Nobu is no newcomer to Melbourne’s restaurant scene. Described as the poor man’s Koko, it’s more casual than the later. You kind of feel okay showing up in your jeans. Albeit unconsciously, I’ve been ignoring it.
Inside, the decor is warm and welcoming, with neutral autumn tones. A very long bar along one side of the room looks like a great place for pre-drinks. There are also tables, booths, and private rooms for meals.
Unlike Maedaya, there isn’t really that authentic Japanese feeling to the place. When the staff say ‘Arigato’, you don’t quite believe them.
Speaking of the staff, they kind of left a little to be desired. While they were polite, they just seemed to forget we were there most of the time. They brought the wrong drinks once, and it took ten minutes to get someone’s attention to bring us the bill.
We ordered the tempura lunch and the bento box, and shared both dishes between the two of us. I really can’t go anywhere that offers a bento box without ordering it.
The food was good, and there was plenty to eat for the both of us. The tempura was just right. The bento box has a good selection of sushi and sashimi, along with the best miso I’ve had in a while.
Nobu is a great choice for vegetarians, with plenty of choice on the menu. You can also order small serves of most items, so if you feel like a mix to share, it’s easy.
Overall, I enjoyed the meal, and felt it provided good value for money. However, with so many other great Japanese choices in Melbourne, it’s hard to know if I would go back. Maybe if Koko is full.
Maya Tequila Bar & Grill
74 Toorak Road
Maya is the kind of place I would bring my friends if I was planning on having a big night. This is not to suggest that the food is bad, in fact it was pretty good.
As its name might suggest, Maya also has an extensive drinks menu. Despite generous offerings of Tequila and Margaritas, I stuck to wine. I’m told the Margarita was an excellent choice.
The atmosphere is relaxed. It’s trendy, but not so much that you feel uncomfortable. You kind of feel like you could just sit and chill out for a little while, eat some good food, have a few drinks, then maybe move on to another local bar.
Usually I avoid Mexican restaurants. My brother likes Mexican and it was his birthday. It’s not that I don’t like Mexican, it’s just that the usual kind of stuff comes covered in about three inches of cheese.
They skip the cheese fest at Maya. Instead you get served food that is tasty, that does not come with guilt for dessert. We ordered three entrees to share between five of us, which was plenty. For mains, I chose the Vegetarian Quesadillas. Everything was fresh and tasty, there was just enough to eat without feeling overstuffed or gluttonous.
The real pick was the fajitas, unfortunately not ordered by me, but the person sitting right next to me. They looked and smelled a treat. Whether you’re a vegetarian or not I’d recommend them.
Dessert was Spanish donuts. While everyone else at the table seemed to be in appreciation of them, they were a pale ghost of the same dish at MoVida I sampled a couple of months back.
The Foreshore Bar and Grill
11 Beach Road
Wanting to sit somewhere nice on a sunny afternoon with friends, Foreshore had plenty of appeal. Foreshore is located on, you guessed it, the foreshore of Rhyll beach, Phillip Island. It’s not the busiest or most populated spot on the island, but is popular with holidayers and tourists nonetheless.
There’s plenty of seating, indoors and out, and what looked to be an expensive and modern fit out. As we walked on I had the feeling that we were about to get fed some crappy food for an outrageous price, coffee club style.
It’s okay, I was wrong. We ordered a few dishes to share as a light lunch. The crispy chips were great. We also ordered the Mezze platter, which included some tasty little treats, which change daily. We also got some olives and bread, along with plenty of drinks. Foreshore have a decent wine list, and also stock Pipsqueak Cider.
Foreshore falls seriously short when it comes to vegetarian options. The only main on the menu I could have ordered was the chicken salad, sans chicken… (they actually advise you to do so on the menu).
The view, as you would imagine, was fantastic, and the staff friendly. Sure, it’s a little pricey, but what else would you expect from a restaurant in one of the busiest tourist traps in Victoria?
If you want to sit on a deck, have some drinks, and look out over some water, it should tick all of the boxes for you.
400 Bridge Road
When I heard Maedaya described as ‘the best Japanese in Melbourne,’ this little Richmond eatery shot straight to the top of my wishlist. Thinking I wouldn’t be the only one, I rang ahead to book. Maedaya don’t take bookings for less than five people, so two of us were advised to just turn up.
On first impressions, the fit-out Maedaya is very Japanese. It has all the looks and appeal of a bar in Kyoto. On the ground floor, there is a long bar, stocked up with what I’m told are some excellent varieties of sake. (I’m not a fan, I stuck to Mojitos). It’s also where they serve a variety of tapas. There is a yakitori grill, where a whole variety of animals are grilled for your pleasure. Vegetarians are advised to stay downstairs.
Don’t let the mention of the grill get you down. There are plenty of vegetarian options downstairs, and some excellent cocktails. Stand outs were the vegetarian gyoza, and the tofu steak, which was one of the best things I have eaten in quite some time. This creation is soaked in a teriakyi sauce and served on a hot plate. It was worth the trip through peak hour traffic to Richmond alone just to have this explode in my mouth.
Maedaya is an Izakaya, which is a kind of Japanese pub, where the emphasis in on drinking. the food is still a component. It’s the kind of place you’re supposed to visit with friends, eat a little, and drink a lot.
I managed to eat a lot and drink a little. Maedaya is a great option for dinner, don’t miss it.