Degustation plates, micro-brew beers and Bavarian accordion. Who could ask for more? Well, Trent says he could live without the accordion, but I couldn’t care less – I’m in beer heaven. Here’s a tip. Don’t come here if you want a schooner of VB and a packet of chips. With boutique Belgian and German-influenced beers brewed by the Red Oak ranging from $5.50 upwards, bring some fresh clean tastebuds and a decent budget. And here’s a tip – it’s worth grabbing a glass of water with each beer to freshen up your palate – no this isn’t just for wine snobs. Really.
Trent and I decide to “go variety” and order the meat degustation accompanied by matched beers, at $20 it initially looks like and expensive proposition but doing the maths we figure it’s actually an excellent and economical way to experience the flavours of the Red Oak without bankrupting yourself or doing a Creosote*. We ended up with variously, Rabbit, Steak tartare, a small cholesterol bomb involving pork and a lamb’s tongue salad, all nibble size and matched with increasingly dark beers. All superb, and mostly available as a main or starter if you decide they’re your thing.
By the end of the evening, we’re fairly tanked and chatting away happily to the staff, some of whom, it turns out, know Trent’s day-job boss, so much banter and helpful beer-related pointers are exchanged, and we close off the night with a massive Stein of Oktoberfest Ale and an Oktoberfest platter, knocking us for six and sending us off to sleep ourselves into blissful hangovers.
* For those who don’t know, it’s a Monty Python reference, check “The Meaning Of Life” if you don’t know it.
review by: Jason