The concept is simple, elegant and successful. The Hunter represents quality, artisanal, local food and The Barrel denotes barrel-aged wines and old-world cocktails with a modern twist.
Hunter & Barrel sits in the new Eastland precinct alongside classic new haunts Huxtaburger and Jimmy Grants, but offers something more entirely.
The tri-levelled and high-ceilinged restaurant has size, but cosiness too. The decor is luxuriously rustic, yet sexy with hunter-gatherer tones. Animal hides, rustic wood, shrubbery and oversized arched windows combine together to create a variety of inviting dining spaces. Sit outdoors, at the bar, at a table, get a group of six together and sit in the beautiful private dining table area.
Hunter’s focus on fresh, seasonal produce from the land and sea is real. The menu embraces moreish coal-roasted meats and seasonal vegetables, with char and smoke. On offer are sharing boards, big barbecued skewers, stews, soups, pies and other hearty fare. The Gatherer’s Feast with five different slow cooked meats and four different sides/salads best embodies the menu’s offerings, with a special shout out to the roasted beef short rib and grilled cauliflower with garlic sauce. The condiments – some of which have been stewed for seven hours – deserve an honourable mention too.
The cocktail list steers closely around the menu. Think barrel-aged rum and black walnut bitters served with fresh pressed apple juice. Or for something entirely unusual, think rosemary and prosciutto infused Belvedere vodka and Midori mixed with fresh watermelon. It all works.
Hunter & Barrel, you are the true beast of the east. Classy service and sophisticated food.
In a sentence: Cave man food – just sexy, elegant and delicious.
Verdict: Would Go Back
Words by Menique Fernando
Melbourne Food Blogger dined courtesy of Hunter & Barrel