Summer dining is my fave. I love being able to sit outside in the sun and the fresh air while I eat, drink & be merry. Despite having lived in the inner north-west of Melbourne for years, today I ventured to The Boathouse, a Gary Mehigan owned restaurant on the Maribyrnong River, for the very first time.
Upon arrival, my companion and I requested to sit outdoors. Our request was granted and we were informed that outdoor tables must order at the counter using their table number. Cool.
Because I'm a total dill I accidentally gave the girl at the counter the incorrect table number (which I promptly rectified) although I still received a short lecture from the waiter when our drinks arrived. Perhaps they shouldn't give diners so much responsibility!
It took us merely minutes to decide on our meal choices (a wagyu burger each, mine without cheese) & after our short debacle with the table numbers, our orders were placed. And then, we waited. After 40 minutes of waiting for a burger & chips, I was a little annoyed. They weren't especially busy and it's an easy meal. It's very unlike me but I actually approached the staff to ask where our meals were. The girl seemed shocked, apparently it is not uncommon to wait 40 minutes for a burger.
Finally ,our burgers arrived. Although the burger was $25 dollars, I was still impressed by the size of the meal. Pretty dang generous. The burger itself also tasted amazing (lettuce, tomato, mustard and pickles) and the chips, although under seasoned, were crunchy and fresh.
Unfortunately, our meals had taken so long to arrive that we then had to inhale our food & make tracks which kind of ruined the experience.
Honestly, I really wanted more from the Boathouse. I didn't expect fine-dining but I did expect better service. I love Gary & I wanted to love his local restaurant.
Never the less, the location is beautiful and it's a bit of a Melbourne icon. I'll probably be back.
It is unfortunately very overrated. The menu hasn't changed since I first went there 10 years ago, the service is ok/average & the prices are high for the quality. The only thing it has going for it is the location which is why they don't try to change/update anything on the menu. We stopped going there a while ago, since we'd had everything on the menu a few times over & got sick of it... Disappointing for a Master Chef owner.