It was a drizzly Friday lunch time and naturally I had hit the wines a few nights before, so all I could think about was carbs. All of them. Luckily for me, Salt Meats Cheese Alexandria had opened its doors… I think you get where I’m going with this.
Aren’t you a clever clogs, then? Yep, I went to Salt Meats Cheese Alexandria. Recently moving from their enormous warehouse space and into a smaller, but just as mighty space on Fountain street, I was eager to see what they had in store. Y’know, apart from salt, meats, and cheese.
The trick to the long lunch is to go with like-minded foodies that aren’t afraid to get themselves into a self-induced food coma. Check. The second trick is to never say no to an Aperol Spritz, no matter the weather. Check check. The menu here covers all manner of cravings, from something light in the summer plate with rockmelon and prosciutto, to comfort food in the spinach and ricotta ravioli with burnt butter, sage, and truffle oil. There are also truffle fries and Italian fries with pesto drizzle if you simply can’t pass up the table chip.
Now, what I ate. Of course there is plenty to choose between, but in the interest of keeping it general, I went with the fresh burrata (creamy as anything) with confit grape tomatoes (so perfectly sweet) and basil pesto (heaven), so you could say it was off to a good start.
Continuing with the grazing plate is the right way to go to cover your bases. It comes with three cured meats, three cheeses, handmade preserves and cornichons. They’ll be different each time, but the truffle pecorino I had will probably have an epic poem written about it, and it has to be said that lathering the sweet beetroot relish on top of triple cream brie and bresaola was one of the highlights of my life thus far. And I once went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, so…
My mum would probably exclaim something weird like “oh, heavens be” if I told her I ate mains after that, but since I’m a grown-ass adult now I went for it like Kirstie Alley on a tub of ice cream. But this wasn’t ice cream, it was a friggin’ lobster tail pizza. Yup, that’s right, bouncy lobster tails on a squid ink pizza base with fontina, fior di latte, garlic oil and thyme. It would have been polite to have one piece and move on, but life is too short, ya know?
Was I done yet? Nup. Also on the table was the braised lamb ragu pappardelle, with gremolata, burnt orange and pecorino. Not too rich (as many ragus can be), the meat was balanced out by the orange zest and it was the kind of meal you want to curl up and spend a winter afternoon in.
Like any good Italian, there’s absolutely a Nutella pizza for dessert, smothered in the good stuff and topped with fresh banana, strawberries and coconut flakes. You’ll get half of it on your face but what’s the point of enjoying life if you don’t?
Food coma firmly in place and a fair few doggie bags to appease my hungry colleagues, I braved the friggin’ monsoon Sydney decided to put on that day and started mentally planning my attack for the next visit. Those truffle fries aren’t going to eat themselves…
Image credit: Daryl Kong