Sometimes, only dude food will do. Sometimes, your body craves chunks of highly flavoured, melt-in-the-mouth meat. And it has to be accompanied by a big serve of great chips – crisp on the outside, soft in the middle, loaded with salt. As a bonus, find a way to include sour cream and bacon bits. While I don’t get these cravings often, it’s nice to know that there are places that can deliver.
Ribs & Schnitzel is a father/daughter venture that has captured this vibe in spades. First impression is that it is a take-away place with only a small amount of seating, the grill and deep fryer just behind the counter. Owner Yoram Malka confirmed that between 40%-60% of his business is either take-away or delivery, depending on the time of year (more on this below). But venture a bit further and you’ll find a small pleasant room out back with one big table (max 8-10) and a few tiny tables for two that captures the afternoon light quite nicely. Unfortunately, the ambience is somewhat spoiled by the view of rubbish bins in the adjoining laneway.
Yoram has prepared a veritable feast for this blogger event, quickly churning out multiple serves of ribs (pork or lamb), several schnitzels with a variety of toppings on request, and a couple of serves of loaded sweet potato fries. The ribs are served on large beds of chips.
First thing to be said – these are very generous serves. The schnitzels all start with 200gm of chicken breast before they are coated with breadcrumbs and deep fried, or for the health conscious, flame grilled without a coating. Then a similarly generous amount of topping is added. I forgot to ask about the standard size of the racks of ribs, but it would take a bigger man than me to walk out of Ribs & Schnitzel still hungry.
Secondly, the flavour – ribs have been hijacked by the elite, marinaded overnight and slow roasted for eight or more hours over flavoured charcoal. This is not practical for a business that aims more at ‘cheap eats’ than ‘high-end dude’. Yoram’s ribs are boiled and then barbequed over an open flame, before being slathered with BBQ sauce. While they are not a good as the best of those elite ribs, they are still pretty darned good – fall-off-the-bone tender and I am definitely licking my fingers.
The crumbed schnitzels were all moist and tender inside their crispy coatings; the flame-grilled version was also perfectly cooked. My favourite was the Mexican (with a topping of salsa, corn, red cabbage, jalapenos, guacamole, sour cream, spring onion), but I’d be happy with any that I tasted, the others being: Parma (Bolognese sauce, ham, grated cheese); American (coleslaw, frankfurt sausage, fried onion, tomato sauce, pickles, American mustard); and Middle Eastern, which was flame grilled (with Moroccan salsa, grilled eggplant, grilled capsicum, chickpeas, coriander, tahini).
There are no sweet options, but after those generous serves it is unlikely you will have room for dessert.