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Published December 25th 2012
Let's do lunch shall we? Plus a tour
Art Gallery Food and Wine
While not wanting to totally typecast this Art Gallery restaurant, on the day I ate here, my daughter and I looked around and noted it was very much a "ladies do luncheon" kind of place.
There were lots of groups of girlfriends, laughing and chatting. Dressed nicely as you do when you go out with the girls.
There were also lots of light dishes to share which added to that sense of female bonhomie.
Hungry but not starving we selected three of the smaller dishes between us.
Our first choice was potted prawns with Melba toast nicely garnished with fennel.
Melba toast was invented for the Australian diva Dame Nellie Melba, who loved her food but didn't want to get any fatter. It is toast of about half the normal thickness.
The white ricotta was drizzled with a chopped herb dressing and then served with a scattering of baby roasted tomatoes and small chunks of roasted sweet potato($14). The colourful trio came on a bed of crisp cos lettuce. This dish was enough to make a salad convert out of anyone.
Other fare on the menu included Harris smoked salmon and chive blinis ($18), asparagus, leek and Gruyere tart with mixed leaf salad ($18), polenta crumbed whiting with avocado salsa and fresh lime ($29) and lemon thyme roasted chicken, with a salad of parsley, green olives, preserved lemon, eshallots and roasted golden beetroot ($26). Some of the desserts such as the Haigh's dark chocolate mousse with salty caramel crumbs and pistachio wafers sounded to die for but after partaking of Melba's famous diet toast we decided to honour her memory.
One of the nicest things about the menu was the options for children such as crustless chicken sandwiches with avocado butter, polenta crumbed whiting fish fingers with fat chips, and a Haigh's frog with chocolate mousse. Children's dishes were all around the $7 mark.
If you time it right you can also go on a free guided tour of the gallery (11am and 2pm). Adelaide has kept her beautiful old period galley which has an important display of colonial art. As an out-of-towner I learnt more about Adelaide in this fifty minute tour than I could have experienced on any lengthy tourist tour around town.
Overseas visitors might also like to note that as well as learning about South Australia's rich history, the Gallery also has one of the world's finest collections of William Morris' art and crafts designed objects. The Barr Smiths, a wealthy Adelaide family ordered thousand of items through his Morris & Co catalogue which were then shipped out to them by sailing boat. Many were later donated to the gallery
The gallery restaurant followed by a guided tour is a great day out for locals, interstaters and overseas travellers.
Takes a tourist to find the best of another city. As a local, you often don't notice or take forgranted what is in fact, right under your nose!!!!
Coffee art - amazing.
Baked ricotta salad -- I'm in!!!!
Art tours - well, my children & I are in, whether they like it or not.
something for all the senses here - inspirational.
From an Adelaidean to a Melburnian, thanks for the interesting tip about the guided tours of our art gallery. I've had coffee at the cafe, but didn't know about the tours. I will put it on my list of to-do's.