Level 1, Transport Hotel
Cnr. Swanston & Flinders Streets
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Ph: (03) 9654 8808
I'd never been to Taxi Kitchen before - although I do remember, sort of, having big nights at Transport Bar on the ground level back in my uni days. This was a much more sedate evening! We started with warm bread, butter and sriracha salt. I love sriracha sauce, and the spicy saltiness was a nice addition to the bread and butter.
|Bread, butter, sriracha salt|
Between us we shared two "small plates", a "medium plate", a "large plate" and a side, which was a good amount of food for four people. Crucially, it also left us room for dessert!
|Candied pork with coconut, red chilli dressing – 4 pieces for $15.50|
We couldn't not order the famous candied pork belly. The confident flavours enhanced the rich meat - the pork itself was candied and came with lashes of fresh herbs, roast coconut and spicy red chilli dressing. I felt that the pork could have been slightly crisper, but it was still a nice dish overall.
|Beef croquettes with shallots & hot mustard dressing – 2 pieces for $9.50|
The beef croquettes were also enjoyable - hot and crisp and full of shreds of tender beef. Both this, and the pork, make perfect drinking food. (Although I wasn't drinking that night as I was doing Dry July). Next time I'll splash out on some drinks!
We shared two pasta dishes between us, both of which were impressive.
|Pumpkin and almond tortellini with buttermilk purée & crispy sage - $22|
The pumpkin and almond tortellini were generously slathered in butter, whole almonds and crisp sage - a nice update on a classic combination. The creamy buttermilk puree added another layer of texture and flavour.
|Pan-fried gnocchi, lamb, peas mint & Persian feta - $29|
I really enjoyed the gnocchi - the pillowy soft gnocchi had become slightly crisp on the edges, and the sauce was full of tender lamb pieces, a deeply savoury jus, sweet peas and salty creamy feta. I love gnocchi cooked in this way; it reminds me of my beloved Schupfnudeln.
Sarah and Sandra always order chips. Always.
|Hand cut chips - $9.50|
We initially ordered two desserts to share - the chocolate fondant with salted caramel ice-cream, and the lemon meringue pie. I'd had my eye on the macadamia and honeycomb parfait with hazelnut ice-cream, but I thought that two desserts was enough, and no-one else seemed keen on the parfait, so I just let it go. But then D-Slam saw my forlorn face and quickly flagged down another waiter and ordered the parfait. Yay! Hooray for friendship! (And mutual greed!)
|Chocolate fondant with salted caramel ice-cream - $15.50|
Ok, so the chocolate fondant was a special at the time, but it seems to have made its way to the full-time menu. And I can see why - the fondant was perfectly cooked with a molten chocolate centre, and the accompanying salted caramel ice-cream was smooth and creamy. (And these days, I imagine that anything with "salted caramel" in the title will continue to fly out of the kitchen!)
|Lemon meringue pie – frozen like Nan’s - $13.50|
The lemon meringue pie was seriously good. Beneath the carapace of soft meringue was a confidently sour lemon sorbet, and a crisp shortbready pastry disc. It was refreshing but still felt like a treat - the perfect way to finish off the meal.
|Lemon meringue pie innards|
And here's the parfait!
|Macadamia & honeycomb parfait with hazelnut ice-cream - $14|
Any dessert containing two types of ice-cream is my type of dessert. There was a mixture of textures on the plate - creamy soft hazelnut ice-cream, slightly firmer frozen parfait with pieces of hazelnut inside, crunchy honeycomb all over the place, bits of mandarin (dehydrated if memory serves me correctly) and little blobs of citrus sauce. Loved it!
And that was our dinner at Taxi! It was a fun evening and we enjoyed the food. It's a good option for a relaxed yet special meal.