Food and Drink
Posted by Dan Kuseta
12. Aug, 2014
In the hamster wheel rush of of pop up bars, fusion joints and no-booking policies, it can be easy to miss the restaurants that have been doing their thing quietly and very well for a very long time.
The type of place that isn’t held captive to the trends of the day, that’s comfortable and confident in what it does. Sort of like the Tony Bennett of restaurants. Punch Lane is such a place. This year it turns 20.
Up on the Paris end of Little Bourke Street, Punch Lane continues to serve up elegant comfort food, an extensive European wine list, and experience in spades.
A recent makeover to the cavernous, heavily timbered interior sees those signature wine bottles lining the walls like books in a library. The lighting is dim with tables arranged at a civil pace – this is the type of place you can have a long dinner without bumping elbows.
Winter has informed the seasonal menu, which currently features stick-to-your-ribs dishes such as Royal Aylesbury duck breast with cos, soubise and confit turnips ($39) and John Dee Black Angus scotch fillet with bone marrow, Montpellier butter and watercress ($42).
For the record, the hand cut Dobson’s chips ($9.50) are some of the best I’ve had in the city. If you can’t decide there’s a reasonably priced five course tasting menu ($74).
Make sure you unwind with a bottle of red and cheese plate in one of those comfy red arm chairs. Pretend you have a cigar. And take your time.
43 Little Bourke Street, Melbourne
Mon to Fri – 12pm to midnight
Sat and Sun – 3pm to midnight
Bar stays open until 1.30am Fri & Sat
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