The Wayside Inn has long been recognised as a destination for enjoying the finer things in life, namely good, hearty food and a tipple or three.
Trading consistently since the early 1900s, the venue is a long-time, local haunt on South Melbourne’s bustling City Road. Now, under the eagle eye and direction of business manager, Carole Luca, Wayside Inn has undergone a major revamp that sees a resurrection of the old traditions and a renewal of the venue’s reputation as honest, creative and fun.
We loved visiting the restaurant which transforms from a casual table setting for lunch service, to a formal dinner dining experience, complete with candles and white linen. In the outdoor courtyard, creeping ivy on the exposed brick and soft lighting after dark creates a gentle ambience, where locals can bring their furry friends and unwind.
The commendable wine list is focused on suppliers from both smaller regional, Australian wineries and internationally. Large wine racks featured on the venue’s walls, showcase their devotion to exceptional and diverse wine regions of the world and there is an assortment of delicious beers on tap and from the bottle.
Under the direction of head chef, Gemma Meslan, the new menu is diverse and designed to please a range of tastes. Inspired by traditional fine dining and influenced by Thai and Vietnamese cuisine, Meslan brings a creative flair to the modern Australian fare of the Wayside Inn, that focuses on well-prepared food using quality, seasonal Australian produce sourced from trusted suppliers.
To start the Salmon ceviche was beautiful. Luxuriously fresh cubes of salmon were tossed in Red onion, tonkatsu, avocado puree, pickled cucumber and wakame. It was a light yet flavour laden dish.
For mains the whole baby barramundi impressed. Having been grilled in paperbark in its own juices and stuffed with lemon, the fish has been cooked to perfection, allowing it’s natural sweetness to shine through.
For the carnivore in you, make sure you do not go past the excellent selection of steaks at Wayside Inn. Wood fired with native Australian red gum, the steaks are cooked to your liking and served with a range of sauces including Red wine jus and chilli and lime butter.
Our visit to Wayside Inn concluded on a delectable note with the Lemon myrtle & buffalo curd pannacotta. This beautiful dessert tasted even better than it looked and boasted an interesting Butterfly pea gel and crisp biscotti for textural contrast.
Location: 446 City Rd, South Melbourne
Phone: (03) 9810 0083