|This Easter weekend, our quest to find more
great brunch spots in Melbourne took us to Hammer & Tong
in Fitzroy. Fitzroy is one of those pockets in a city that
is as creative as they come. A place where its age shows,
this area of town is not lacking in character. Hammer &
Tong sits just off of Brunswick Street (for people that live
in Vancouver, it is much like Main Street or Commercial
Drive) and is home to one of the more well known soft-shell
crab burgers in the city.
We arrived at the door at about 11am and was met with a lineup that took about 15 minutes to get in (not too shabby). Not surprisingly, the restaurant was bustling and very full. We were served some great coffee here in no time... what came after though, didn't come until almost 40 minutes later. Needless to say, we were starved by the time our food arrived. We get that the restaurant is busy but 2/3rds of an hour is too long. Having said that the food hit the spot and I suppose that was this experience's saving grace.
We ordered the smoked trout, kale, poached egg on a rye
bagel with seaweed hollandaise along with the zucchini and
corn fritters with poached egg. The smoked trout was good
but maybe a little dry. The combination of the ingredients
is what made this dish so memorable. It was delicious and we
polished off that plate with ease. The fritters had a very
mexican flare to it and it also had a great, crispy texture
on the outside. To end our meal, we shared a soft shell crab
burger since it was selling like hot cakes. Our conclusion?
It was good - the bun was very soft and warm (I'm no good
with descriptions as you can tell) and the flavor was
distinctly asian - but it was a little too salty.
Overall, we enjoyed it. We may have had better in Melbourne but this ranks right up there with the best. We'll be back.
Fitzroy, Melbourne, Australia