Mockingbird Bar

8/15/2010 12:22:00 AM

A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to try out Mockingbird, a trendy little tapas and cocktail bar on Fitzroy street, next to the George cinema. It's been open for a few years now, but I actually hadn't heard about it until I was invited down. The answer was, of course, yes. Y'all know I love cocktails, and I very rarely head out to St. Kilda, unless it's for a show or concert (recently saw [title of show]). Or some wicked cheesecake and Gugelhupf!

Mockingbird Bar
129 Fitzroy St
St Kilda, Vic 3182
Ph: (03) 9534-0000

We arrived at about 7pm last Friday, together with Thanh and Ling, and took some pictures out on Fitzroy St before heading in. Have a look at more of Sandra's fabulous shots on her Flickr!

The owner George took over the site a couple of years ago, and renamed it Mockingbird, in honour of his late mother, whose favourite novel was To Kill A Mockingbird.

These shots of Atticus Finch were brought over from the USA by a regular customer.

Red velvet curtains and soft lighting create a warm and welcoming atmosphere, which is enhanced by the use of scented candles. A nice touch.

They have a good cocktail list, including some classics and some signature cocktails, and the food is a mixture of small plates and main meals.

We started off with a round of cocktails... (and I must stress I didn't have these all to myself; we shared them between the 4 of us!)

Espresso martini - Vodka, tia maria, frangelico, shot of espresso

I thought the espresso martini was fabulous! It simply tasted like strong, sweet brewed coffee, with a fabulous creamy foam on top. I'm quite sure it was a lot more alchoholic than it tasted, hehe.

Back: Caramel Martini
Front: Manhattan Cosmopolitan - Vodka, cointreau, chambord, cranberry juice, fresh lime juice
Not pictured: Atticus Finch - Dark rum, sloe gin, peach schnapps, fresh lime juice

The caramel martini tasted a bit like Baileys - a good choice for those of us who like creamy cocktails.T he Atticus Finch looked quite similar to a Cosmo, with a lovely peach flavour (like Japanese peach water - momo no tennensui).

For food, we started with a Mockingbird tasting plate, which included a range of different charcuterie and other treats. FYI, for all the items we tried, I got the prices from the menu - however, George may have altered the quantities from standard-size to serve our group of 4.

Mockingbird tasting plate - Antico Rosso chicken parfait, hand-pressed sopressa, mussels in strawberry (an unusual combo, but it worked!), wagyu bresoala, taramasalata, pancetta, cornichons and olives - $24

I particularly liked the taramasalata, finding it fresh, rich and creamy. The chicken parfait was also a highlight. (Must learn to make my own!) The tasting plate came with a serving of warm pita bread, which was very soft and had a delectable charred taste from the pan.

Warm pita bread

In my opinion, cocktails are best accompanied by deep-fried morsels...

Mozzarella and herb arancini with beetroot sauce - $6

Beer battered Moreton Bay bugs tails with caper mayonnaise - $24

The moreton bay bugs were extremely fresh, and crispily fried, topped with a classic tartare-style sauce, and little fish eggs, capers and red onions scattered about. Mmm.. I could have eaten a whole plate of those to myself!

We had a couple more drinks in between courses.. (well, it was a Friday night!)

The below drink, the Lychee and Passionfruit martini, is what we would describe as a "typical Sarah drink", combining 2 of my favourite ingredients.

Lychee and Passionfruit Martini

George generously provided the recipe for the cocktail, which I will share with you now, in the hope that someone will make it for me. *Hint hint*

Mockingbird's Lychee and Passion fruit Martini

1 oz lychee vodka
1/2 oz lychee liquor
1/2 oz passionfruit liquor
two barspoons passionfruit pulp

Mix ingredients (except the pulp) in a Boston glass, shake and double strain on a cocktail glass. Add the two barspoons of passion fruit pulp.

Another Mockingbird special is their "twisted mojito" - like a regular mojito, but with vanilla vodka. I think the warmth of the vanilla worked really well against the freshness of the mint and the lime.

We shared the following main, which looked deceptively simple - just chicken and polenta - but was absolutely amazing! My favourite of the night.

Half-roasted chicken on truffled polenta with jus deglaze - $28

The chicken was juicy and had crispy skin. I don't normally like polenta, but this version was delicious. It was decadently smooth and creamy, and I think it had more than a touch of butter!

And to finish off... a couple of creme brûlées.
Creme brûlée with espresso ice-cream and burnt orange ice-cream - $11

Who doesn't love the tap-tap-crack of a creme brûlée? Mockingbird's version had a thin and crackly sugar top, and a smooth custard. No little vanilla-bean flecks, but it was a good version nonetheless. The ice-creams were both very grown-up flavours - a strong espresso, and a slightly bitter burnt orange.

From the outside, Mockingbird looks like a standard cocktail bar, and whilst they certainly do have great cocktails, I was just as impressed by the food they serve. A lovely spot for a quiet drink, a snack or something more substantial.

Sarah and Sandra dined as guests of Mockingbird, with thanks to George Lentzos.

Mockingbird Tapas and Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

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  1. Nice! Can't wait till I try it as well. Hmmm... caramel cocktail will suit me, I think. :)

  2. You didn't have ALL the cocktails, just most of them haha.

    I love cracking the tops of creme brulee every since watching Amelie. It's such a pleasure.

    Good description of all the food despite all those cocktails. It was definitely a nice place to have a drink on the weekends.

  3. Great photos Sandra and Sarah! Love the close up photo especially of the coffee machine.

    I loved the espresso martini too, it was pretty strong stuff for me haha, I remember taking 5 sips in one go hehe. Food was ultra tasty too :-)




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