High St highlight
FOOD reviewer Cameron Best says Geelong has some great ‘‘gastropubs’’ and the Belmont is right up there. Good food, good value.
Belmont Hotel 77 High Street, Belmont Ph: 5243 2802 Type of cuisine: Gastropub
Hugely popular pub on High St.
WHAT IT’S GOT
The Belmont Hotel has been the heart and soul of the High St shopping district for many, many years. The fabulous art deco feel has been well preserved inside and out with dining and lounge rooms alongside the bar.
Being a pub, it would be a crime not to have some of the standards on the menu, but there’s also a certain flair to the dishes.
We went for the pan-seared Atlantic salmon on a lemon and dill potato rosti with dressed rocket and a dill, caper and lemon beurre blanc ($ 27.50), and the special of the day, Asian spiced pork belly on a fresh vegetable slaw and hot and sour glaze ($25).
I must admit, the dishes initially looked a little like that scene out of The
Flintstones when the waitress brings out a brontosaurus burger for Fred. They are more-than-generous portions with a big hunk of meat on top.
But, while imposing, the dishes weren’t ham-fisted and each was packed with flavour.
The salmon was nicely cooked and was perfectly accompanied by the potato rosti and rocket. The dill and lemon dressing tied the dish together, giving it some attitude, and cut through the oils in the fish.
The pork belly had a beautiful Asian dressing covering the vegetable slaw and the pork was well cooked, so the fat was rendered out through the meat, making it deliciously moist. Unfortunately, the skin was a little rubbery still and didn’t have that lovely crackling crunch that would have sent this dish over the top.
The Belmont is a popular spot and has a great atmosphere as a result. Waiting staff were extremely friendly and attentive, and were happy to make suggestions.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Expect to pay about $14 for entrees and there are some tempting offerings there — duck and fennel sausage with house-made tomato and chilli jam or a Greek-style stuffed eggplant with a basil oil and fig vinocotto.
Because it is a pub, you can certainly get the classic chicken parmigiana ($16.50 for lunch/$ 22.50 for dinner). Other mains range from $22 up to $33.
Geelong has some great ‘‘gastropubs’’ and the Belmont is right up there.
Good food, good value. Taste of food: Scored out of 10 Ambience, service, value for money: Out of 10
PACKED WITH FLAVOUR: Pan-seared Atlantic salmon served on a lemon and dill potato rosti with dressed rocket and a dill, caper and lemon beurre blanc.
Asian spiced pork belly on a fresh vegetable slaw and hot and sour glaze.