Samson’s Paddock has been on my endless wishlist of places to visit for as long as I’ve been following them on social media, which has been quite a while now. I’ve longingly looked at photos of their food and in my head kept saying I really have to get there one day! Sometimes you just don’t get around to doing these things and for me Mosman Park seemed that little bit further from home, but hey a weekend drive can be delightful! When I was contacted by the Samson’s Paddock team about their new chef, Georgi Partenov, and was asked if I’d like to come for a visit I was so pleased! I was going to get to try their amazing food at long last!
Located on Glyde St, a stone’s throw from Mosman Park train station, Samson’s Paddock is set amongst a small row of cute shops. The street frontage has a welcoming, understated feel, lush with leaves from overhanging trees and a vibrant splash of green from the tiled wall. Windows emblazoned with the Samson’s Paddock logo let you peek inside. It was a much larger space than I had initially thought when we arrived. When you first wander inside there’s the bar area, with plenty of natural wood tones, including an impressive long timber table, then along a wall there is a solid collection of whisky bottles. That’s their specialty on the drinks front – wine and whisky. Two crowd pleasers. Continuing on, there’s a large well-lit dining room off to the side of the bar, where you can sneak peeks of all the kitchen activity. Finally out the back is an interesting range of additional seating in their well shaded alfresco. It’s like a surprise secret garden when you step outside, it’s a great space, ideal for the abundance of sunny weather we are spoilt with in the West.
We set ourselves up in the dining room, right near the window where the light was lovely. I felt like something fizzy and ordered the house sparkling, while GG decided to expand his wine appreciation borders with a glass of the wine of the month, a red hailing from South Africa. With drinks in hand on this sunny Saturday it was time to think about food, which I just love to do.
I had perhaps given the menu a cursory look or two before we’d arrived, a habit at this stage, and it was part of the reason I was excited to be visiting. It was a good looking menu and I would have chosen one of everything if I could! It all sounded so appetising, but we had to exhibit some restraint and after some careful consideration we narrowed our selection down to five dishes.
arancini, mushroom, spinach, feta, truffle $11
beetroot salad, walnuts, goats cheese, basil, mixed greens, sherry vinaigrette, quinoa $14 (gf)
crispy chicken wings, bbq sauce $12 (habanero salsa $1)
fettucine, wild boar ragout $17
meats & fish
grainfed lamb backstrap, grassfed lamb belly, gratin, crispy shallots $32
It didn’t take long for our food to start arriving and in the interim we sat and enjoyed our drinks and bopped along to the choice old school tunes they were playing. It was great, the perfect vibe for a chilled Saturday lunch.
First up were the beetroot salad and the mushroom arancini. Always easy to temporarily park the cold dishes and focus on the hot ones before they cool and I was looking forward to launching into the perfectly crispy arancini. The aroma reached us before the plate hit the table. Oh truffle, you are a delight, so distinct and so heady. The golden crumbed wonders had been lightly topped with grated parmesan and just enough flat leaf parsley to add some green to the plate. Slicing them in half to reveal the cheesy centre, it was easy to spy the spinach and the abundance of mushrooms. We took our first eager bites and it was happy, contented smiles all round and no complaints from me when GG dished out the rest so we could share them evenly. They were delicious. Plenty of flavour and a great contrast between the softer centre and that crunchy crumb.
The wings came next, love me some wings! Size wise they looked the goods, but the batter was on the lighter side and I was intrigued as to how they would taste. They came with two sauces, one a sweeter BBQ style and the other the Habanero salsa. The latter had this great lingering warmth as you would expect from such a fiery chilli. And let me tell you something…that batter was amazing. It was light yet so crispy and along with the perfectly cooked chicken it made for a really supreme wing. We dipped away from sauce to sauce and polished those finger lickin good wings off in short order.
The pasta dish had appeared and it was a vision. Ribbons of fresh fettuccine had been elegantly swirled in amongst lovingly slow cooked wild boar (I really need to ask whether it was boar….do we have wild boars in WA? We probably do I suppose, kicking around somewhere) along with generous shavings of parmesan and a dainty sprinkle of micro herbs to add a little colour. It looked lovely. And the taste? Heavenly. The meat just melted in your mouth and that fettuccine was cooked to al dente perfection. I love that there’s quite a richness to proper fresh pasta and you don’t need a mountain. Having said that, we savoured each and every ribbon of this delicious dish and there was the temptation to go wild and order another serve.
Our final selection arrived, the lovely lamb. Again, it was a dish plated with care and consideration. The seared lamb fillet had been sliced and arranged on top of some crisped lamb belly floss… I suppose you could call it. Then at each end of the lamb was a stack of potato gratin, big fan from way back, creamy, cheesy spud what’s not to love? What upped the wow factor of this plate was the small jug of jus. There wasn’t a huge amount of it, but there didn’t need to be because there was such an intensity to the flavour. It enhanced the deliciousness of the tender lamb and having two different cuts prepared different ways added some interesting texture to this dish.
It was then time for our refreshing salad chaser and it was a nice way to round out our meal with something on the lighter side. A lot of lovely fresh flavours and beetroot and goats cheese should always hang out. They are a winning pair.
The dessert menu was very tempting, but we were already feeling comfortable and didn’t want to have to be rolled out, so something sweet was going to have to wait until our next visit. I suspected that the next visit would not be far away at all. We really enjoyed our lunch at Samson’s Paddock. Even GG commented that we’d ordered five dishes and had thoroughly enjoyed them all. They had been well prepared and presented, with delicious flavours and he is keen to head back! It’s definitely one to keep in mind when you are in that part of the world, but if it’s not in your neck of the woods, book in a lunch or dinner and take a drive. It’s well worth it.
Thank you for the invitation. You’ll see us again very soon!