Saturday, May 26, 2012

Rickett's Point Tea House, Beaumaris by Snooze

For Mother’s Day, my kids (Miss W and Miss C) offered to take me out for lunch—their treat. My family has two places we generally go to: Miss W loves yum cha and that’s our usual choice but we’ve also been to the Rickett’s Point Tea House for afternoon tea a number of times and I opted for there as it’d been quite a while.

The tea house is at one of the best beachside locations in Melbourne and looks out over the rock pools that form part of the Ricketts Point Marine Sanctuary. (If you’ve never heard of the Sanctuary it’s around 115 hectares in size and stretches out into the bay.) I live within ten minutes walk of a beach further south and Ricketts Point is still a place my family has visited over the years, winter or summer.

I can’t recall whether we had to wait to be seated, but Miss W (who suffers from hypothermia when the temperature gets under 20C—I kid you not) found herself a spot parked in front the gas powered log fire. However, there’s no table service, and while I was collecting chilled water from the tap Miss C ordered our lunch.

I found the menu long but uninteresting and opted for the salt and pepper squid. When I eat out with the Eat and Be Merry Crew this is a frequent and generally good choice but I was unimpressed. The main size dish came with a decent portion of calamari that was well cooked but it arrived on a bed of rocket drizzled with olive oil. Note to chef: drizzling a salad green with second rate olive oil does not a salad or salad dressing make.

Miss C went with the quiche lorraine, the quiche of the day, which she didn’t finish. She explained to me that it was greasy and reheated, a common occurrence with quiche, which I find never improves the taste.

Miss W opted for the best dish of the day: fish and chips, with salad. She finished her fish and chips, which was generous in portion, and I got to try the fish which I thought was OK. It was easily the best of the three meals, except for the salad. I’m a salad and vegetable buff and the small bowl of salad was passed to me, but it was less a salad than salad greens drizzled with balsamic vinegar and the same olive oil. Note to chef: see my comments above regarding drizzling a salad green with second rate olive oil which applies equally to drizzling a salad with balsamic vinegar and second olive oil!

The food is basic and might have been considered adventurous during the 1980s but is now dated (and seriously crying out for a visit from Gordon Ramsay). Add the price, lack of table service and some of the food being reheated means I can’t recommend eating there. I will offer an upside and that’s if you’re looking for afternoon tea in a fabulous location—our usual choice in the past—the cafĂ© is OK and I’ll personally stick to afternoon tea in the future. What I seriously recommend is that if you’re visiting Rickett’s Point and you’re there at lunch time—take a picnic with you or use one of the electric BBQs there.

Food – 5
Service – 5
Ambience – 8
Price – 5

420 Beach Rd
Beaumaris VIC 3193
Tel: (03) 9589 3040

Rickett's Point Teahouse on Urbanspoon

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