Rochester Hotel, fondly known as the ‘Rochey’ in Fitzroy, Melbourne, has launched an exciting new food direction. Joining forces with Mischa Tropp, founder of cult caterer We Are Kerala, the new South Indian inspired menu smashes stale perceptions of Indian food bringing an unexpected and welcome spice to the Fitzroy favourite.
Launched on Friday May 6, the new menu has a strong focus on Mischa’s Keralan heritage, including dishes from along the Konkan coast. The concept came about when Mischa (after successful collaborative kitchen takeovers with other Melbourne hotpots such as Tomboy, Host and Etta) approached the Rochey team.
Expect spicy, aromatic, light and balanced dishes with punters given the option to dine in the
restaurant or the front bar.
We loved dining at the restaurant where we were provided with the opportunity to discover South Indian cuisine with sharing plates which includes a broad range of vegan and vegetarian dishes.
Everything we tasted was delicious. Make that seriously delicious.
To start we loved the vegan dish of Confit Parsnips served with Kashmiri chilli crumb. This is one flavour explosion. The Goan sliders were similarly delicious - Make sure you try the Choris slider which is particularly yum and comprises of house made Portuguese milk bun sandwiching juicy, spicy chorizo mixed with onion masala.
For mains do not go past the stunning selection of curries - Each, fantastic and go down a treat with flaky Parota and fluffy Rose Mata Rice.
The 1/2 Ghee Roast Chicken with tamarind and Kashmiri chilli curry was beautiful. The chicken was cooked to perfection and coated with moreish, silky and aromatic curry.
If you love your spice, do not go past the Fish Nadan - Another showstopper, the curry boasts a beautiful piece of fish lovingly simmered in spicy Keralan curry.
The vegan and gluten free Kadala curry from the vegetables section of the menu was also wonderful - a nutty, brown chickpea curry in a roasted coconut masala, this was rich, creamy and showcased the versatility of the restaurant and its ability to cater to different dietary requirements.
And yes, they do a good dessert as well. Think gooey Roasted Banana served with luxurious salted caramel ice cream and dusted with sundried coconut. Just. Yum.
Mischa’s travels through India and in particular the Southern region to learn more of his heritage and their cuisine is reflected in the Rochey’s new fresh and exciting menu– a great introduction to an Indian cuisine that is not yet well known.
Location: 202 Johnston Street, Fitzroy
Phone: (03) 9416 0166