Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Newmarket Hotel - (Melbourne)

  Have I told you already, I am rather quite easily satisfied.    Here’s what I really treasure overall.   Execution.   I respect and admire any kitchen that can consistently achieve this on a regular basis,  much like I also really respect Pastry chefs who can make their desserts or bread one after another just like an exact mould of each another on a constant basis.    Newmarket Hotel belongs to some gigantic Hotel Group that I’ve never heard of but know it somehow exists!     Paul Wilson is their executive chef and I’ve had fond memories when he was still at the Botanical and cooking me his hanger steak with a killer sauce. 

  One will find some familiar Paul Wilson signature dishes on the menu here,  such as the Poached Egg with Truffle and Soft Polenta and Reggiano cheese  (which is a bit exaggerated,  because most of the time when you order this you get a measly slice of Summer Truffle rather than the real Perigord truffle).    But the new menu in Newmarket is really interesting -  based on Latina street food and Hispanic or Catalan/Spanish influence.   One item specifically was what enticed me to try out here on 2 separate occasions  : )  The Bone Marrow taco.  But no signs of the Bone Marrow burger here nowadays…




The Courtyard outside is pleasant. 
The internal space is also equally,
quite communal just the way I like it..


09’ Ombra Rosso from King Valley -  AUD $7
Wines here are served in table glasses mostly,  since they’re meant to be quaffers. 
Rated to begin from ordinary Table wine to Fine grade wines here.  


True South ‘Red Truck’ -  AUD $8
A Melbourne brewed beer that is recommended by the staff and said to pair well with the food I ordered.   This really worked as a combo.  A great recommendation indeed.


Soft Tacos with Wood Roasted Marrow, Chimichurri & Ranchero Style Brisket -  AUD $16
I found this a little pricey, but it was done really well and very addictive.  The herbed Bone Marrow made for a luscious addition to what is a normal taco dish.  To add on top of this,  the ranchero beef brisket was perfectly rendered and marinated,  with a hint of chimichurri sauce.  The taco sheets were also excellently done,  complimented by a judicial amount of parsley herbs.  This is again probably a bit idealised for the Australian market,  but the taste was great.  That is all I ever care about,  as long as you dun try to fix the unbroken wheel ~   8/10



Lamb Ribs Barbacoa, Pomegranate Mole, Avocado & Tahini -  $38
This was cooked to perfection.  The membrane-y lamb ribs were gamey and just tender rather than too fork tender.  The Mole sauce is a little thin and missing the chocolate-spiced taste but the pomegranate seeds in situ carefully offset the richness of this dish.  The avocado and tahini puree carried a nice smokiness.   The side on salad was also carefully calculated with bits of radish, halved grapes and herbs.  Apart from the mole sauce,  this was near enough to perfection  ~  9/10

Soft Tacos with Pork Carnitas, Baby Gem Pickled Pineapple and Hot Adobe Sauce -  $16
Adobe?  Thought that’s an image software company?  This was spelt incorrectly on the menu but its actually an Adobo sauce.  Typos aside  this was sensational.    The Carnitas might have the wrong texture to a really shreddy, proper carnitas.  It was great in its taste,  but not in texture.   The pickled pineapple worked so well as a compliment.  Even the taco tortillas were impressively fragrant.    I liked this but this is not as So-Cal and Cal-Mex as I remember having, despite Newmarket Hotel claims itself to be…  This was cooked brilliantly  but brings me back to the point of whether authenticity in a dish carries significance.   This might not be true to its intended nature but apart from a lack of exotic herbs and lime wedges,  this was definitely cooked well.   It is still more Aust-Mex than So-Cal and Cal-Mex in my opinion.  ~   9/10



Price: AUD $65 per person
Food: ♕♕♕♕♕

Opening Hours:
Mon to Sun  -   12pm - 3pm,  6pm-11pm

Address:  34 Inkerman Street, St Kilda 
(Around 5-10 min from the closest Tram Station in St Kilda).
Ph:  (03) 9537 1777


  1. The food here reminds me of the ones in mamasita. Not sure if you will like mamasita though. hehe

  2. Hi Michelle,

    I think so too hehe! I think Mamasita is probably more Mex-Mex than the somehow more So-Cal Mex but Aust-Mex converted stuffhere.. not sure why I think that! May be coz its too sophisticated? As it should really be a street food?

    I plan to return back. Also went to Mexicali Rose before and the Trippy Taco's/Max Mex, etc. I love this stuff !! :D



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