Many years ago now GG and I ventured to Claisebrook Cove for a very lovely lunch at Blackbird Restaurant. I had been meaning to head back for years now but just never got around to it. I recently spied a Dimmi special for 50% off food at Blackbird, which seemed like the perfect opportunity to finally head back. So we booked in for a Thursday evening and off we went. It wasn’t overly full when we first arrived, a few people sitting in the outside section and we were taken to a table for two inside, opposite the bar. It was actually fairly dark inside, but hey mood lighting is a lovely thing.
As I recall from my last visit it wasn’t an overly extensive menu. The first section featured smaller shared dishes and then there were larger mains and a few sides. We asked what the croquettes of the day and the fish of the day were. Snapper was the fish du jour and for croquettes they were a beef and red capsicum combination. We thought they sounded nice so we ordered those - Croquettes of the Day, along with a serve of the Spiced crispy calamari and some of the Radish and Lettuce Salad. I did take a few pics of these dishes when they arrived but they were a fairly dark and blurry affair so I thought I’d leave them out.
Our starters arrived fairly promptly. Everything looked quite nice. The salad perhaps looked a little on the basic side, just a little regular, could have probably been prettied up a smidge but I suspected it might be a nice refreshing contrast to the fried squid and the deep fried croquettes. The squid was fine but definitely lacked any sort of punchy kick on the spice front. And we both wished they had included a fresh lemon wedge just to spritz on top and lift the flavours. The croquettes were definitely my favourite. Well seasoned and with a tasty combination of beef, cheese and some sweetness from the red capsicum. The outer coating was light and crispy and all in all they were just plain yum.
For mains GG ordered the Beef eye fillet, house smoked tomatoes, juniper red rice, salsa verda (shocker I know :)) while I decided I would give the Caramelized pork belly salad, baby chats, apple a whirl.
I wasn’t really sure what to expect on the presentation front but it looked nice enough and there were plenty of chunky squares of pork belly. There were a lot of flavours going on too – apple, orange, spud, red cabbage, lettuce… I enjoyed the pork, it had been well cooked and rendered, but with all the other ingredients it was just a bit busy. As with the other dishes we’d ordered my main was nice, but hadn’t really blown me away. And in my opinion the prices seemed a little on the high side. GG shared this sentiment for his meal too. With a price tag of $39 you’d expect a more than decent steak and it just didn’t quite hit the mark.
So the visit hadn’t quite lived up to my fond memory. The food was ok, but I didn’t think it warranted the price so I was glad I had come with a 50% off food token in tow.