Famous Blue Raincoat, 25 Vernon St, Yarraville. Phone: 9391 8520
After a splendid Sunday roast experience, it’s a pleasure to be returning to the Famous Blue Raincoat for a mid-week dinner.
It’s “locals’ night” and we’re up for it.
The main dining room has had a holiday break reno and looks lovely with the early evening sun streaming in.
There are already several tables taken and reservation notices on more, but we’re very happy to step out back to the cool, charming garden area.
On locals’ night, a variety of meals are offered at $13.50 each – tonight, according to the joint’s Facebook page, the line-up is:
Moroccan lamb chops on a baby spinach, roasted eggplant and cherry tomato salad; chicken parma, fat chips and salad; steak, mash and onion gravy; butter chicken curry with basmati rice, roti bread and yoghurt; roast beetroot, walnut and goats cheese salad; and Raincoat burger with the lot and fat chips.
The fish of the day, we discover upon arrival, is blue grenadier on a Greek salad.
Tonight I put my foot town about Bennie automatically ordering the burger, so it’s the chicken parma for him.
It’s a good one, too.
He likes the double layer of ham, the sauce is a little sweet and almost smoky, and the chicken meat is nicely crumbed and enjoyably moist.
It’s big for the boy – he doesn’t finish it
The chips could be adjudged a tad too salty, but otherwise they’re sensational – big, hot, crisp and entirely delicious.
I help myself to them with no protests from my offsider.
I need them to offset the lack of carb-like heft to my lamb chop dish.
The eggplant I incorrectly assumed would play that role turns out to be little more than a few chewy wisps that could hardly be said to deserve such a prominent role in the dish’s description.
The rest of the salad is fine.
The seasoning on my chops – cumin? lemon? – is fabulous, but beyond that the pair of them present quite a challenge.
I understand that for an asking price of $13.50 there are severe limitations on what cuts of meat can be sourced.
But in the case of my two chops, only the round hearts of both are easily, enjoyably eaten. The rest – though equally tasty – requires much sawing with knife and gnawing with jaw.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing … maybe we’d have done better, food-wise, had I let Bennie do the burger thing. And maybe I should have gone for the fish, which I turned away from on the basis that we can and do frequently make Greek salads at home.
A funny thing though: Reflecting on our dinner on the way home, we agree we had a fine time, like the place a lot and will return.
It was locals’ night; we’re locals (even if we do live in another part of Yarraville); and we felt right at home.