Meal of the week No.2: Bax Food Co

Leave a comment

bax22

 

After having already hit Gamon Street’s fab new Jamaican eatery with a largish group that pretty much ran through the entire menu, I’m excited to be taking Bennie there.

And I know just what to order to press my teenage dude’s buttons.

Mine, too.

BBQ pork ribs, jerk Piccapeppa chicken wings, BBQ corn, cassava chips.

It’s a lip-smacking feast for two moderately hungry lads.

The chicken wings, at $9, strike us as a bargain.

The superb chips provide affordable bulk.

Between the slaw with both meat choices and the corn, there’s enough veggie action going on.

Even with a couple of $3 soft drinks, we pay a very good $41.

As we amble back on to Gamon, energetically flossing our teeth, Bennie opines:

“That’s the best food I’ve had in Yarraville.”

I’m inclined to agree with him.

See earlier review here.

Jamaica in Yarraville: Review

5 Comments

bax13

OK, Roderick – you’ve for sure taken care of us tonight; now we need some sugar!

 

Bax Food Co, 83 Gamon Street, Yarraville. Phone: 0402 751 108

How wonderful is it that a Jamaican restaurant is up running in Yarraville?

“Very” is the conclusion of our table of five after a spectacular mid-week dinner.

There’s enough of us to try – and share – just about everything on the menu.

It’s all good or better.

And much of it is very, very good indeed.

CTS has a long, pre-blog relationship with these Gamon Street premises – oft times Bennie and I used Gravy Train as a regular breakfast spot, those breakfasts being mostly made up of just toast and hot beverages.

Somehow along the way, Gravy Train seemed to get overtaken by foodie developments in Yarraville village, Seddon and several points in between.

So fronting here, to a refurbished location, to join my four dining companions has something of an air of circles turning and regeneration.

 

bax12

 

The makeover, both inside and out, is substantial but also very colourful and funky rustic.

It fits the casual, happy vibe of the place to a tee.

We found the service to be very fine and the wait times for our choices shorter, if anything, than we might have expected.

 

bax2

 

Cassava chips ($7) are plain of flavour but a crisp delight nonetheless.

 

bax3

 

Ackee, saltfish and mushroom patties with tomato love apple sauce ($10) are like delicate treats something like curry puffs with a taste like mum’s homemade fish pie.

 

bax4

 

Jerk roast corn with coconut jerk may ($6) is a wild, different and delicious contrast to plainer versions of roasted corn.

Yum factor: High.

 

bax5

 

In a meal of many highlights, perhaps the most giddy, moan-inducing reactions come with dishes that mirror and even best many of those we’ve enjoyed in recent months at various BBQ joints around town.

These smokey BBQ pork ribs ($13), for instance, are immense in every way – spicy, charred, OMG.

 

bax10

 

Likewise with the jerk Picapeppa hot wings ($9).

These are even spicier than the ribs, a little more piquant and every bit as awesome.

 

bax8

 

Goat curry ($24) has wonderfully tender, fall-off-the-bone meat and is gorgeous.

 

bax7

 

Our curry is served with roti bread (also available as a side, $4) unlike anything roti we’ve tried before.

It’s almost-crisp and spongey but does the mopping-up job expected of any kind of roti just fine.

 

bax6

 

Oxtail stew with butter bean and carrots ($25) has sweet meat easily exctracted from gnarly bones and is another winner.

With its star anise, you know what this reminds me of?

Vietnamese beef stew!

Only two of our party had any depth of experience with Jamaican food before our meal, but I had a strong intuition that the Bax fare would be somehow familiar in any case, perhaps based on my familiarity with New Orleans and South Louisiana food.

Such turns out to be very much the case.

The Bax goodies can sit comfortably alongside other westie options such as  Vietnamese and African – right at home but strikingly different.

As chef Roderick points out, such is always going to be the case as creole food (using the word in it its most universal sense) the world over often draws on shared traditions.

As regards to pricing, the oxtail stew and the goat curry are substantial, bigger than they appear in the photographs, are sharing material for up to four (with other dishes alongside) and  quite good value.

 

bax9

 

Rice ‘n’ peas ($6) is a Jamaican staple that is nice enough but gets a bit lost amid the richness of what surrounds it.

 

bax11

 

Sadly, the same can be said of our fried snapper with pickled condiments and salad ($28).

The fish is beautifully cooked but arrives at our table last of our mains and at a point where we’re just about full to the ears, its plainness overwhelmed by the spiciness that has preceded.

Full, maybe, but still able to find room for shared desserts …

 

bax14

 

Dark Shadows ($10) is an intriguing mix of condensed milk and grapefruit – it’s tangy and smooth.

 

bax15

 

But sweet potato pudding ($12) is more our go – it’s like a very dense, rich bread and butter pudding-meets-caramel slice.

 

bax16

 

Rum and raisin ice-cream ($5) is brought-in but nevertheless very good – it has, as several of my companions note, an unusually high level of “rumminess”.

In her review on Fill Up On Bread – see here – Mairead comments that perhaps Bax has gone a little overboard with the bax (box) concept in the form of too much cardboard, especially given the prices.

To tell you the truth, we have been so busy eating and enjoying we didn’t notice.

Bax Food Co, it seems clear to me, is sure to be a successful ornament to the local eats scene.

Very highly recommended!

 

bax17

bax18

Jamaica in Yarraville: Update

1 Comment

bax1

 

Bax Food Co, 83 Gamon Street, Yarraville. Phone: 0402 751 108

SEE REVIEW HERE.

Since our initial story reporting the exciting news that a Jamaican restaurant is soon to open in Yarraville, Consider The Sauce has made contact with two of the three partners involved, and enjoyed some cordial conversations with Dalton and Roderick about their plans.

Unfortunately, efforts to synchronise all three partners and myself to be in the same place at the same time for a photograph were bettered by busy schedules all round.

Oh well – it’s time for an update anyway, especially as opening night is almost upon us!

Here’s the details …

The restaurant will be known as Bax Food Co and will operate out of the former home Gravy Train at 83 Gamon Street.

Opening night will be this coming Friday, February 20, on which night there will be 6pm and 8pm sittings.

Bookings can be made via roderick@bossmanfood.com.au 0402 751 108.

The “bax” part of their name comes from a casual style of eating in Jamaica whereby instead of sit-down meals, customers get a “bax” (box) full of goodies.

Bax Food Co will, of course, serve their food this way, too, though Roderick assures me some of the sides will be presented regular style on regular plates!

At the time of going to press, the menu was still being completed … but Roderick did number off several dishes that will be available:

Jerk chicken.

Oxtail stew.

Goat curry.

Salted cod.

Rice ‘n’ peas.

BBQ ribs.

Casava chips.

Spicy jerk roast corn with coconut jerk mayo.

Fish will be in the form of whole snapper, which will be the top-priced item at about $30.