Bloomin’ lovely eatery

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - FRONT PAGE - Graeme Phillips

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.

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