Thursday, June 20, 2013

Silo by Joost, Mebourne CBD by Bureaucrat

Silo by Joost is a place I've been curious about for quite some time.  It has that hippy, eco vibe that's alluring and also strangely confronting with its earnest eco-warrior feel-goodery vibe.  

While I've been intrigued about the place (it's cute and I've read about it in so many places), there was never a right time to go.  Either I was with the wrong dining companions who wouldn't be interested in trying an hippy, veggy, eco place, or I wasn't in the mood for hippy, veggy and feel-good food.  Plus, I've read SbyJ has zero waste.  They recycle, reuse and.... well, you get the picture.

Having being able to escape the desk for lunch one day, we headed down to SbyJ, which is located in Hardware Lane. It's a narrow shop with a few small tables on the pavement, and a big shared table inside.  Remarkably, among the five of us, we've never tried this place before despite its close proximity to our office.  

Inside, it's an intimate space and an excellent example of how one can efficiently and effectively use a limited space - kinda like an Ikea display.  As I said, there's a long shared table with high stools, which runs parallel to the kitchen.  You can see everything as it's being prepared - from the grain they're milling for the bread to the dishes being plated up.  Snooze and I remarked it's like being invited into someone's home to watch them make a meal for you.

As it was lunch hour, we were fairly lucky to bag five seats at the shared table.  The staff were so friendly and accommodating helping us get settled in and comfortable.

There's a limited menu of about five dishes.  Everything that's offered is based on what is in season and what they happen to have.

I got the spiced eggplant, freekah and yoghurt.  The eggplant was cut into thick rounds which were grilled/baked in the oven.  They were perfectly squishy without falling apart... very morish.  I loved the freshness from the mint and the fennel fronds (I think), and the sweet juicy burst of pomegranate seeds. The freekah and torn chunks of ciabatta bread which was drizzled with lots of lovely EVOO gave the dish texture.  Yum.

Snooze and Ms No Meat shared the eggplant and the four grains salad w carrots, almond and coriander. Ms No Meat thought the salad was the perfect size (it certainly seemed the biggest serve of the dishes we ordered), and liked the combination of flavours and textures.  She felt it was filling without being too much.

Big Fil and Ruby Grapefruit got the smoked river trout, potato, fennel and herbs.  Both of them thought the dish was delicious - the trout was lightly smoked and the dressing very tasty. A very fresh and light dish.  However, they thought the dish was a little too light as the serving was quite small. The addition of a few slices of bread would have made the dish perfect.

We also got some of their homemade ginger beer/cordial thingy and I got a pot of soy chai (which used their homemade soy milk).  

Food – 9
Ambience – 8
Service – 7.5
Price – 6.5

Given the serving size, the prices are on the high side of things.  However, you know this means you're getting fresh, eco-friendly and very, very Mother Earth quality food in return.  Food for the soul.  I really do love what SbyJ are doing and that they're passionate about what they do.  I will come back again whenever I want to eat something nourishing and doing my bit for Mother Earth.

Silo by Joost
123 Hardware Lane
Melbourne 3000
Telephone: 9600 0588

Silo by Joost on Urbanspoon

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