Warradale Hotel - Porkchops and bacon, my two favorite animals

Warradale Hotel - 234 Diagonal Road, Warradale

The Warradale Hotel invited The Chopping Board to review its menu. All meals and drinks were provided free of charge by the Warradale Hotel.

The Warradale Hotel was recently awarded three prestigious awards at the 2013 AHA Awards including SA's Best Bistro.  The newly renovated Bistro, along with 3 new bars, was something we wanted to see and experience for ourselves, so it was pretty hard to refuse an offer so good.

Our reservation was at 7:30 pm on a Thursday, arriving just a few minutes early we noticed the entire Bistro was at near full capacity, a good sign.  Greeted by very friendly staff we were seated just under the specials board. We ordered a few drinks and sat back to enjoy and be part of the atmospheric venue.      

We were all hungry so quickly ordered right after our first round of drinks.

Before our dishes came out, Jess ventured off to try the Salad Bar.  She returned with a few samples and was thoroughly pleased with what was on offer but we warned her that bigger and better things were to come.
Main Entry Signage
Natural Oysters
Natural Oysters [4] - $7.50
Oysters Kilpatrick
Kilpatrick Oysters [4] - $9
Fried Sheeps Haloumi
Fried Sheep's Haloumi - $16
Duck liver Parfait
Duck Liver Parfait - $14

Appetiser Plate
Appetiser plate - $30

Our entrees included the above 5 dishes.  The Natural Oysters were fresh, fairly well sized and were consumed quite quickly along with the Kilpatricks. Our hunger was getting to us. The Appetiser plate was a massive dish that took up a large portion of the table. The dips included a slightly spicy and tangy guacamole and a sweet pumpkin dip. The dips and bread were a good balance to the spicy chorizo and chilli salted almonds. The croquettes were deliciously creamy and fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside.

The Duck Liver Parfait may be a dish that only a few might choose but we still opted for it so we could at least provide a review for those who may be interested. It was quite sweet but the flat bread (not pictured) gave it a good balance. Combined with the refreshing walnut and celery salad, it resulted in an interesting taste. Definitely an acquired taste.

The highlight of the entrees was the Haloumi. It disappeared within a few seconds as each of us sampled a first slice and quickly went back for more. It was not overly salty, texture was quite springy and finished with a creamy aftertaste. After we had the entrees to whet our appetite we wasted no time moving on to the mains!    

Parmesan Crumbled Pork Rib-eye
Parmesan Crumbed Pork Rib-Eye - $28
Perfectly cooked, slightly pink.
First up for the mains was the parmesan crumbed pork rib eye. Now, the four of us dining agreed that when we go out, we very rarely order pork for our main - this may make us reconsider. The thick piece of pork was perfectly cooked making it slightly pink and ever so soft and juicy. All four diners were very quick to praise this dish and chose it as one of the standouts of the night. The accompanying pea and corn mash was very smooth and creamy and was a good accompaniment to the dish.

Fresh Seafood Grill
Fresh Seafood Grill - $38
A few of our Facebook community members recommended that we give the seafood grill a go whilst we were there. Collectively, this was our least favourite dish of the night. Whilst the prawns and scallops were perfectly cooked retaining a moist centre and the squid was tender and retained bite, the fish was the disappointment as it was very dry, hard to cut, chew and overall had a cardboard feel and taste. It was most probably due to overcooking or just a bad cut of fish or a combination of both. The dish being $38 (whilst we did not pay) we would have expected a quality piece of fish if we were paying customers.

MSA Wagyu Rump Steak
MSA Wagyu Rump Steak (rating 6) - $34
Medium rare - perfect
Whilst perusing the menu, we all focused on the grill section and the Wagyu (5-7 marble score) catches our eye. We ask the waitress to confirm the marble score and she promptly asks the chef who guarantees us a 6 score. We requested it to be medium rare and confirmed the order.

Arriving at the table with a nice crisscross char we quickly sliced into it hoping for a pink centre. As shown in the pictures above, we all knew this was to be a fantastic steak. Soft, oily marbled centre with a little crispy crust on the outside made this a delicious dish. A few pieces in the middle were a bit chewy, but this is quite acceptable for steak we thought because the majority melted in the mouth.

Char grilled lamb loin
Special - Char Grilled Lamb Loin with walnuts, potato, Barossa Speck Lardons and Pepper Glaze - $32
Last but certainly not least was the char grilled lamb. This was a special on the night so we decided to give it a go. The lamb, like the pork, was perfectly cooked and was soft and juicy. Even one of our diners who is not a huge lamb lover enjoyed the meal. The walnuts and potato added different textural elements to the dish and the the speck added some additional saltiness...mmm mmm bacon. Whilst some people may look at this dish and ask where the glaze is, to be honest, the lamb was cooked so well that it didn't really need it.

Wanting to provide a well rounded review, we also selected some desserts. Hey - you ALWAYS have room for desserts.

Vanilla Crepes
Warm Vanilla Crepes - $10.50
Chocolate Fondue
Dark chocolate creme brûlée - $10
Warm vanilla crepes in orange syrup was the first dessert to arrive. Unfortunately the accompanying dessert (creme brulee) overshadowed this dish. The crepes were soft, warm and soaked up the citrus syrup, making every bite a tangy delight. For lovers of sweet and tangy tastes, this would be a delight, however we must focus on the evil that was to come......

Arriving a few seconds later was the second dessert for the night, the dark chocolate creme brûlée. The 'creme brûlée' element comes from the sugar crack top which, once broken through shows you a smooth and decadent dark chocolate mousse. Mirko and Jess (being sweet tooths) thoroughly enjoyed this dish and mentioned that they could easily have had the dish without the accompanying almond tulip and port and star anise poached pear. A word of warning, do not share this dish, there's not enough to go around! I (Hayes) found out when there was only a bite left after Jess and Mirko had demolished it.

We all agreed, it was definitely a perfect end to the a great evening of wining and dining.

We can definitely see how The Warradale Hotel has picked up a few awards. The atmosphere in these newly renovated bistro areas is bustling with life. Tables are very well spaced out, outdoor wall gardens and the windowed kitchen creates a very friendly atmosphere. The quality of the food surprised us all with 2 truly outstanding dishes being the pork and creme brûlée. We all left the Bistro with very full stomachs and stayed in the car park for a few minutes discussing how damn good the pork was........

The Warradale on Urbanspoon

NB: Tom didn't attend the dinner at the Warradale Hotel nor did he contribute to or influence this blog post because he is employed by the hotel group that owns the Warradale Hotel.


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