WILD AT HEART
THE CLIENTELE MAY SEEM RATHER TAME, BUT THE MENU AT THIS EDGE HILL EATERY DOES TAKE A SAUNTER ON THE WILDER SIDE.
IT’S Tuesday lunch hour and Wild Bean is positively laid back.
There’s action in the kitchen, which is fully visible from our table, but outside it’s all serenity, breeze, greenery and substantial lunching.
If you want a respite from work, noise or other nonsense, you needn’t hike your way to the top of the nearby Red Arrow nature walk for peace, you can just plonk down here in the shade and enjoy some sustenance.
Lunch for two today consists of roast veggie salad with added chicken and a seafood trio.
We’re enchanted by the name of a drink, Wild Illusion.
No illusions here though, a mix of apple, melon, celery and passionfruit juice with a hint of ginger for zing, it’s an effective midday pickme-up.
You could kick back and spend some time in these lush surrounds, but lunch lands fairly quickly.
The salad, served in a bowl, has leaves, cucumber, capsicum and red onion on the bottom, all fresh and crisp.
Piled atop is cubed roasted eggplant, zucchini, sweet potato, mushrooms with crumbled feta and toasted pine nuts.
We have added optional chicken tenderloins marinated in garlic and thyme.
The three strips are a bit dry, but edible and overall it’s a filling meal.
My guest’s seafood trio is presented on a wooden chopping board.
A large fillet of panko crumbed fish cut in half is succulent (the menu has it down generically as “fish”, we guess it’s probably Spanish mackerel).
There are two good prawns, four bits of calamari, a sensible portion of chunky chips, on a bed of rocket with a side of house-made aioli.
All seating is outdoors but under cover, there has been additional shade added in the form of a wavy metal shelter that is in keeping with the unique design of the mirrored complex which houses the Botanic Gardens Visitors Centre.
A few potted plants strategically placed and ferns in hanging baskets add to the al fresco feel. Cakes in the cabinet look tempting and we’re lured to an orange and almond piece to share, which doesn’t disappoint.