Cut­ler & Co

An­drew Mccon­nell’s rus­tic re­fresh of the Cut­ler & Co con­cept is our cur­rent favourite of Mel­bourne’s fancy-pants eater­ies.

Time Out (Melbourne) - - FOOD AWARDS 2017 - By Larissa Dubecki

IT SAYS PLENTY about the warp speed of our din­ing scene that a restau­rant goes in for a ma­jor over­haul af­ter only eight years in the busi­ness. We were think­ing of declar­ing it a wor­ry­ing new trend. But then we thought again. The in­sa­tiable search for the shiny and new this year de­liv­ered us Cut­ler & Co 2.0, and for that we are truly thank­ful. An­drew Mccon­nell is a chef with a proven track record in rolling with the times, and at his Gertrude Street fine din­ing flag­ship the good times are well and truly rolling, thanks in no small part to the re­in­state­ment of the bar menu. It’s a bud­get hack of an ad­mit­tedly ex­pen­sive restau­rant, and it has en­abled mere mor­tals to keep com­pany with a whole bunch of seafood-fo­cussed snacks. Think evilly ad­dic­tive abalone tonkatsu, sand­wiched in white-gi bread, and mini dough­nuts with crème fraîche and sal­mon roe, or just a big ol’ col­lec­tion of fruits de mer. It’s helped along by an open kitchen with a mise-en-scène stolen from a French farm­house, but there are plenty of rea­sons to step through to the in­ner sanc­tum of the din­ing room, where de­signer Iva Foschia has spliced Old World charm with the build­ing’s in­dus­trial bones. It’s a lus­cious set­ting for lus­cious food. The most ar­rest­ing dish of the year lives here – the roasted pi­geon, in­clud­ing a clawed foot look­ing like an out take from a Wes Craven film, draped in salty swatches of jamón with jewel-like torched figs. But we could also add the mush­room pithivier with aged Comté, the text­book suck­ling pig, and pretty much the whole menu from go to whoah. It’s tough out there in the heady restau­rant world. Between es­tab­lished op­er­a­tors and the new, the gloves are off. And the din­ers are the win­ners. 55-57 Gertrude St, Fitzroy 3065. 03 9419 4888. cut­lerandco.com.au.

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