Fitzroy Town Hall Hotel, 166 Johnston Street, Fitzroy. Phone: 9416 5055
It’s been a while between drinks in the Sunday roast lunch department for CTS, so I am delighted to step out – and outside the Melbourne’s west – to meet Nat at the Fitzroy Town Hall Hotel.
It’s a lovely place on Johnston Street.
It’s done up nicely, though I suspect it’s life and times stretch way back.
Oddly, I have no recall of it from my early-days-in-Melbourne – my first three abodes here were in Fitzroy.
But then, food was pretty much – but not entirely – mere fuel for me then; I was busy with other things.
Going by the menu and the various blackboards around, this pub is a serious foodie destination.
But we’re definitely here for the roast.
Nat has a strong hunch I’ll be delighted.
He’s dead right.
Most of the Sunday roasts written about in the CTS archives are of the cheap ‘n’ cheerful variety that lob in somewhere in the $10 to $15 range.
But we are only too happy to pay more for real class.
Fitzroy Town Hall delivers.
Our plates of Diamantina topside wagyu with winter vegetables, Yorkshire pudding and gravy are a dream and worth every cent of the $25 we pay.
All is good; all is – actually – perfect.
Even the water cress fits right, rather than being a mere garnish.
The celeriac remoulade on the left is pungent enough for me to ignore the proffered selection of mustards.
The beef is rare, juicy, stupendously good.
At first glance, I start wondering how much an extra slab of meat would cost.
But it turns out to be very sufficient, especially as …
… the bowl of sooper dooper spuds we share is so generous.
With them come a handful of Yorkshire puds.
And even these are winners.
So often, in my experience, they are akin to fossilised turds.
Here, though, they are light and a boss part of our meals rather than a nod to stodgy tradition.