Despite being located near work, I didn't realised just how close it was. FOSB&R is located upstairs on the Lt Lonsdale St side of QV, sandwiched between Strike Bowling and a San Churro shop.
Following the flight of stairs up, the place opens up into a spacious area - there's a bar area, a dining area and a nice, breezy balcony that overlooks Swanston St. The place is decorated in 1920s-30s style furniture and trimmings. A few of us couldn't help but notice the nice decorative touches - art deco and recyled glass light fixtures, the statement chandelier, lots of comfy couches and deer heads.
As we were a large group, we pre-ordered. As such, we all went for the $15 lunch deal, where you get to pick a main dish (from about 15 mains) and a soft drink.
Here are a few of the dishes (apologies in advance about the blurriness of some of the photos... I was still getting used to my new camera)...
...a few of us got the Philly steak sandwich. A Turkish roll filled w housemade tomato relish, steak, caramelised onions, Swiss cheese, cos, baby pickles and jalapenos. Everyone who got this loved it.
...Ms A got the chargrilled summer veg salad comprised of grilled zucchs, capsicums, asparagus and eggplant w baby spinach, cherry toms and panfried haloumi. Despite being the only veggie option, Ms A liked her salad. It certainly looked good to me - it looked substantial (unlike some vegetarian options that look like rabbit food).
...a few of us got the beef, apple and beetroot burger (including moi). A brioche bun w housemade beetroot chutney, black Angus beef and apple patty and a wedge of brie. I picked this because of the brie, beetroot and apple, and I'm so glad I did! A very generous, juicy patty which made more delicious with the oozing brie. The chutney was equally generous and wasn't too sour or sweet. There was just so much of it that I had to prioritise. I ate all the good stuff and left the brioche bun and most of the chips. The only minor negative is that the aioli didn't taste very garlicky.
...a dozen buffalo wings. Ms U got these. While she was impressed with it when it came out, she was left rather puzzled with the lack of spice. Ms U had to ask for some Tabasco to give the wings a kick.
...Mr J got a dozen Cajun wings. Unlike Ms U, Mr J liked his wings and thought they were flavoursome.
...Mr H got the dish that all of us wanted, but dared not to because of the calorie content. Mr H got the crumbed camembert. Crumbed and shallow fried, served w housemade beetroot chutney, rocket, pear and Parmesan salad. Despite liking the cheese, Mr H only finished about 2/3 of the cheese as this was a rich mama!
Food – 9
Ambience – 9
Service – 8.5
Price – 8.5
The overwhelming feedback was the serves are huge - and indeed they are! The food was pretty good for most of us, however, a few weren't that impressed (mainly Ms U's bland buffalo wings). I thought the food was above average and I really liked the place.
The place feels classy without being try-hard, and yet it's casual enough to just go there and hangout over a leisurely lunch or drink. The service was great and friendly. I'd definitely go back for lunch/dinner and drinks, even!
I liked this place so much, that I went back there within a week with Mr S. Despite wanting to try another main dish, I opted for the beetroot, apple beef burger again because I liked it so much the first time. Mr S got the man-burger (200g patty, cheese, beer battered fries, egg and bacon - just to name some of the ingredients) and to his credit, Mr S did finish everything on his plate... I guess he's a man!
Father's Office Speakeasy Bar and Restaurant
249 Little Lonsdale St
Telephone: 9662 3798