Sunday, December 19, 2010

Proud Mary, Collingwood by Big Fil

Christmas is coming and the slowdown in work meant that we had time to explore a little further from the office during our lunchbreak. Ms Counting her Calories wanted to get a little bit out of town so together with Snooze we ventured out to check out Proud Mary.

Now I know this place has been around for a while and that every man and his dog/cat/goldfish has already visited and blogged about it. However, between travelling, it being on slightly the wrong side of town for me, and the sheer number of cafes Snooze and I have on our list of places to visit we never got around to paying a call.

The setup is the sort of industrial open space area with individual and communal table arrangements that has become so prevalent in the inner eastern and northern suburbs. While I didn't find the arrangement as interesting as, say Three Bags Full, it felt that they made good use of the available space with plenty of natural light and no danger of bumping elbows with other diners.

Snooze made an unusual choice for her, avoiding the lamb kofta with chickpeas to go for the chipotle beans which came with corn bread, crisp pork belly and a poached egg. The pork belly was delicious, more tender than crisp but not nearly as fatty as you sometimes get. The corn bread was full of flavour and the egg perfectly poached. And while Snooze felt the beans could have used something to give them a bit more punch I thought they were good.

With my first choice snaffled by Snooze I went with the ricotta hotcakes with baked banana, butterscotch and peanut butter ice-cream. This was one of those dishes that put together things I haven't seen in combination before but seemed likely to work. And they did. The hot cakes were thick but light and fluffy on the inside, and lightly crispy on the outside. The butterscotch sauce and baked bananas created an almost sinfully rich topping and the peanut butter ice-cream complemented the rest of the dish well. Not too subtle a dish but real tasty and comforting style food.

After I picked the dish Ms Counting her Calories was leaning towards she went for the Potato Hash, with asparagus, bacon, a poached egg and bagna cauda, an anchovies and garlic cream sauce. Again the egg was perfectly poached, the bacon nicely crispy. Ms Counting her Calories felt the hash was a bit over salty but I didn't find it so and thought it was well cooked.

While it didn't seem overly full for the number of staff it was at first a bit chaotic and we were left standing to the side for what seemed an unnecessarily long time while a place was cleared for us. However once we were seated staff were very friendly (without being overly so) and our orders arrived reasonably promptly. The food itself I enjoyed a lot and they prices were quite reasonable for the quality provided.

Food - 8.5
Service - 7.5
Ambience - 7.5
Prices - 7.5

172 Oxford Street
Collingwood VIC 3066
Tel: (03) 9417 5930

Proud Mary on Urbanspoon

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