Bloomin’ lovely eatery
I’ VE written before about how good the food is at The Lotus Eaters.
In a previous review, I wrote that Giselle Barton and her kitchen team were serving “the best, most varied and perfectly cooked cafe food in the state”.
Six years on, and after a recent Sunday lunch where we sampled every dish on the menu, I’m happy to say that is still my opinion.
Over the years, with dishes as varied as a beef, red wine and bay leaf pie, a roasted pumpkin pizza, mushroom tart, Indonesianstyle curry and a chicken miso broth, the cooking and harmony of flavours have been outstanding.
Best of all was a beautiful dish of duck egg pasta with white wine, fennel and pepperberry sauce topped with crumbled toasted walnuts and shards of grana. It was a simple, subtle and sublime dish that any top- end restaurant anywhere would have been proud to serve.
The stars of the small lunch menu this time were a beetroot, carrot, dill and vodka soup with sour cream, a beautifully spiced chicken and vegetable Thai green curry and a Dutch cream potato, bay leaf, rosemary and Tongola cheese tart with toasted almonds.
“We use whatever fresh goodies people drop into us,” I was told.
But it’s Barton and her team’s cooking talents and refined palate knowledge across diverse flavours and cuisines that makes The Lotus Eaters special and, for me, sets it apart from most other cafes in the state.
And, when it comes to “fresh goodies”, they have an abundance of riches to draw on from their own and other’s gardens, orchards and farms in the surrounding Cygnet area.
The area’s produce and the people who grow it, as well as standout establishments such as The Lotus Eaters and Red Velvet Lounge, have been integral in the transformation of Cygnet into the busy, attractive and multifaceted tourist and communal village it is today.
As with Zepps in Campbell Town, good food in Cygnet has acted as an important catalyst for change.
But, those carrots in a Russian- style borscht? Unusual, but it worked beautifully.
And that’s the way with just about everything at The Lotus Eaters. Eclectic and everchanging menus using fresh, local and homemade ingredients served up in a crowded, often chaotic and frenetic small space, but it all just works.