and chips tastes bet­ter when there is sand be­tween your toes

Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Eat Out -

IS THERE any­thing more sum­mery than fish and chips by the beach, feet buried in sand and seag­ulls lurk­ing, tuck­ing into bat­tered good­ness?

Stroll right off the St Kilda board­walk and get your fix at Pa­per Fish, the kiosk built into a cor­ner of the im­pos­ing new Stoke­house re­de­vel­op­ment.

Its open­ing last month marked the first time Stoke­house has traded since the pop­u­lar beach­front restau­rant burned down in Jan­uary 2014. Part of a new three-venue precinct, Pa­per Fish has been joined by ca­sual restau­rant Pon­toon, with up­stairs fine-diner Stoke­house to open this month.

Stoke­house head chef Ol­lie Hans­ford has over­seen the menu here, which has an em­pha­sis on sus­tain­able fish – sal­mon, gummy, flat­head, blue grenadier – grilled or tem­pura-style.

Or­der at the win­dow to take away or grab a seat in the com­mu­nal area out the front un­der palm trees with that mil­lion-dol­lar view.

Chips are crin­kle cut and su­per crispy, served in a cone with an out­stand­ing spicy house sea­son­ing. Or snap up the ex­cel­lent co­conut-cov­ered prawn tacos or a Ja­panese-style potato cake with well-sea­soned mash and ve­g­ies not un­like bub­ble-and-squeak.

Sal­ads might run to clas­sic Greek or cae­sar, or chickpea with or­ange and fen­nel, or re­fresh­ing cu­cum­ber, mint, co­rian­der and lime.

Booze it up with surfer Mick Fanning’s Bal­ter beer or house-made gran­i­tas with a shot of vodka or gin.

Per­haps not quite so con­vinc­ing is the wine in a can on of­fer, though. Ditto the or­der­ing sys­tem, which in­volves a staffer shout­ing your name to the crowds when your haul is ready. Bring on the app, due next year, with on­line or­der­ing and de­liv­ery to your beach towel. And be­ware, menu items sell out.

That said, Pa­per Fish will be­come a part of those leg­endary sum­mer nights in St Kilda. Seag­ulls and all.

From top: the star chips, the Pa­per Fish Stoke­house precinct, 30 Jacka Blvd, St Kilda pa­per­ au

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