Dining Review: Hope St Radio – Melbourne
While it is fun to dine at the most popular restaurants in the city, it is equally fun to try and discover something new and exciting. These searches often take us outside of the central business or tourist districts and we get to explore somewhere new. I found Hope St Radio as the young chef was named as “up and coming” after success with pop up restaurants (reminded me of Her Place Supper Club in Philadelphia). The concept of the restaurant was certainly intriguing as apparently a DJ plays each night.
We had a bit of a hard time finding the location – we arrived to a different neighborhood, Collingswood, and could not seem to find the exact location of the restaurant. There was a pavilion that had a bunch of people outside enjoying themselves and low and behold, that is where Hope St Radio was found. Since we arrived early, we got drinks and waited until the dinner service started. This spot is very unique, attracting people of all ages and backgrounds – it was a varied group of people attracted to Hope St Radio but all with the same interest in good music, food, and drinks.
Once inside, it was hard to ignore the unique choice of wall paper – giant crayon pictures like a kid had the best time decorating. They crammed a place setting at every possible corner to fit in all the guests for the evening. With music blarring from the DJ of the evening, we were ready to see what this place was all about!
Oyster, radio mignonette
It is hard to go wrong with oysters and these were delightful – nice and salty, and a good size as well.
Beans, puy lentils, salsa verde
It was refreshing to have a dish so green! The beans were crisp, the lentils were well cooked, and the salsa verde added a freshness that made this dish feel light and heathly. I really appreciate when chef’s add simple dishes like this and do not hide vegetables with butter or deep frying.
Stracciatella, sugarloaf cabbage, anchovy
This dish sounded most intriguing and it was hard not to try it after reading it. And wow, this was an amazing dish! It takes talent to tune a wedge of cabbage into a delectable dish. The cabbage was prepared so well with a perfect char – it tasted delicious! That paired with the sweetness of the stracciatella and the saltiness of the crunchy anchovy pieces, this really was a creative and perfectly executed dish.
Spaghetti, baby leeks, spigarello greens and Tagliatelle, prawn, sobrassada, pangrattato
Sorry the picture quality here is not the greatest – these dark restaurants make it hard to take a decent photograph! Anyway, we loved that the two larger portion options on the menu were pastas so we split both of them. These were both yummy. The tagliatelle was a bit spicy so my preference was to the spaghetti. The portion sizes of these dishes were larger than we expected but we still finished it all no problem.
Meringue, poached rhubarb, whipped mascarpone, pistachio
This is definitely not a dessert we would typically go for but it was the only offering and we were interested to see what it was all about. When the meringue arrived at the table, we were so impressed by the presentation – it was beautiful! Though I am ready for rhubarb to bow out from the lime light – I just do not enjoy it in any presentation. Luckily this rhubarb was not intertwined with the rest of the dessert. The marscapone on top was amazing and I think we could have eaten just that and been happy. Such a fun dessert!
Wow, such a fun concept for a dining experience! And we really loved this neighborhood – there was so much going on when we left and the outside of the building I was still bopping. What we found most impressive was the wide diversity of people this spot attracted. I do not think I have ever seen such a variety of all different people coming together for great food, unique wine, and bopping music.