Nutritionist & Life Coach
Meeting all requirements to call myself so (i.e. none)
Published July 28th 2013
Cracking Croatian cooking
Ragusa is a restaurant that manages to deliver meals that could be described as hearty yet still be regarded as gourmet rather than simple cooking.
The heritage listed 1876 exterior of the building is juxtaposed with the fresh modern interior. Walking through the door you just feel like you're going to get something special. With experienced wait staff and a more than competent team in the kitchen, that inkling is well justified by what comes out on the plates.
Ragusa is a Croatian restaurant, the moniker being the former name for coastal city Dubrovnik. The cuisine is something of a cross between Italian and German with a pinch of Russian thrown in for good measure. With the Adriatic lapping at the nation's shores there is an abundance of seafood dishes but also plenty of cured meats and sausages that are a staple further inland.
Seafood stew with polenta
Our selections ranged from an exquisitely flavoured seafood stew, to skinless sausages and the marinated pork belly. Each dish was delicious and there could be no complaints about the portion size.
When one bit into the crackle on the pork it could be heard in nearby suburbs and the meat below, marinated as it had been for two weeks, was deliciously tender. The sausages were available in entrée size but ordering the main netted us enough skinless snags to feed an entire kindergarten fundraiser.
The crackliest crackling that ever cracked
Being heroically stoic we ignored the fact we were completely sated after the mains and, for the good of Weekendnotes readers, we pressed on to order dessert. The sour cherry strudel and the traditional hazelnut cake - soaked in chocolate sauce - provided an exceptional way to cap off the meal.
The big choc
I believe that dessert without chocolate is like sex without orgasm - still enjoyable but ultimately unfulfilling - however the strudel, with its accompanying hazelnut ice cream, was the pick of the two outstanding offerings.
I hadn't experienced Croatian cuisine before but it certainly received a ringing endorse from what Ragusa had to offer. If you're comfortable paying low-30's for your mains, then definitely give this one a look in.