Us city folks can be stubborn. With great restaurants at every turn, it can be hard convincing us to jump in the car and drive for a good meal. That’s why a pop-up restaurant is such a great idea, it gives restaurants the opportunity to lure inner-city folk like me to the burbs…if they get it right that is.
For three weeks only, Victoria’s award-winning Berwick restaurant, MPD Steak Kitchen, has brought its famous flavours to Melbourne’s CBD so that meat enthusiasts can sample their menu without the 45-minute or so drive.
The steak tartare
If like me, you’ve lost many a night to Spice Market (if you know it, you know it), then you’ll appreciate being on the other side of the glass for once at the former adjoining restaurant known as MoMo.
They’ve echoed the modern yet relaxed vibe of the original restaurant quite well considering this is a temporary establishment. The kitchen is helmed by Executive Chef Chris Bonello (formerly of Vue Group) who is serving up a curated menu of contemporary Australian fare, composed of the venue’s past and present signatures, along with a range of the highest quality steak for which MPD Steak Kitchen is renowned.
I have to give a shoutout to our amazing waitress whose knowledge of the menu easily eradicated that ‘I’m so overwhelmed by choices’ feeling that quite often occurs and leads to over-ordering, something I’m guilty of all the time.
The steak tartare with 63° egg yolk, horseradish and potato crisps starter hit the spot. It’s immediately apparent that MPD uses the highest quality meats that simply melt in the mouth and their eggplant terrine had so many amazing elements (hello MasterChef lingo), with the crispy kale being a standout for my palate.
Choosing a steak is such a personal thing. Everyone likes something different but for me, I judge a good steak restaurant on their porterhouse. At MPD it’s a Cape Grim, 36-month, 300g pasture fed slab of meat. Peppercorn sauce, medium-rare, of course. It’s divine and the quality of the meat speaks for itself.
A perfectly cooked porterhouse
One main wasn’t enough and I also ordered the Flinders Island lamb shoulder with pickled cabbage, pear and baby vegetables. It falls apart at the touch of the fork and is paired perfectly with its accompaniments which add a little, much-appreciated sweetness.
Dessert isn’t normally my thing. I’m a starter-main kind of diner, not a main-dessert one. That aside my dining partner had his eye on the apple tart tatin with burnt vanilla ice cream. I use Heston Blumenthal’s pineapple tipsy cake as my benchmark for most desserts but it has to be said that this apple creation may rival one of the greats.
“I’d drive to Berwick for this for sure”, my partner states. So I guess that’s settled. This is a pop-up that will have you hooked. It’s only here until April 13th so get yourself down there and you’ll be jumping in the car to the burbs in no time.
Address: Beaney Lane, Melbourne VIC 3000
Date: 26 March – 13 April
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 5:30pm-late
Reservations: Click here
Diner instructions: Walk down Beaney Lane and up the stairs at the end to find an
elevator. After descending, guests will be met by a friendly MPD Steak Kitchen host.
We negotiate the best price so you don’t have to
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