Press* Food and Wine has it's own style, from the food down to the decor. It opened up in 2011 to a lot of fanfare, it's the type of place that you just want to like; thankfully Press* delivers. It's an eclectic menu that can suit a long lunch or a quick bite to eat, and it can pretty quickly become a favourite.
The menu is divided into individual sections so it's easy to follow: raw, smaller, seafood, offal, meat, on the side, cheese, and sweet things. To sample everything it's great choosing something from each section. Raw provides a light and fresh start to the meal, the yellow-fine tuna with cucumber and mint, or coffin bay pacific oysters are both incredibly fresh.
The 'smaller' menu has a real mix of dishes. The salads have all the right flavours and textures, they're all a bit more substantial than your usual Sumo Salad. The roasted pork bun with kewpie is a small asian inspired roll, and the press* burger with onion rings is a great quick lunch.
The seafood and meat menus offer delicious flavour combinations, and produce sourced from the best of local suppliers. But really, the offal menu is what sets Press* apart from most nearby restaurants. It can be daunting to someone who has never eaten so many different parts of an animal, but expand your horizons and give them a go. For the ultimate offal feast choose the press* mixed grill: morcilla, liver, brains & minute steak, caramelised onion, apple slaw & poached egg.
The food is tasty, fresh, and from top quality ingredients. It's joined by an impressive wine and beer list, with bottles sourced from all over the world. There is also a cocktail list if you really feel like indulging.
Overall Press* has a great feel to it. Downstairs has a relaxed vibe. There are long wooden tables that you share with other diners, and fresh vegetables are peppered around the room as decoration. Upstairs is a bit more formal, better for business lunches and meetings. If you're eating alone try and grab a table facing the window, Press* is a great spot for people watching down Waymouth Street.
Press* isn't the cheapest of places, but you can easily go in and grab a small meal for under $15. Most mains are in the mid to high $20s. If you want to splash out choose the Press* tasting menu for $65, where you can sample a range of dishes off the menu, or get a half roast berkshire suckling pig ($295). Both of these are best enjoyed with a group of friends.
There really are so many elements to Press, and the best way to find out more is to go experience it for yourself. You can check out their sample menu online.