Pubs are like chocolate. Different pubs appeal to different groups of people, and once a favourite is found, there is a lot of loyalty attached to the venue of choice.
The Malvern Hotel in Toorak is the Lindt of pubs - not as pretentious as Godiva, but doesn't quite attract the Mars Bar crowd either. It is the oldest hotel in the district, but supersedes the others in more ways than mere longevity.
Inside, you'll find that the hotel is stylish and welcoming. The decor is a fresh blend of modern and traditional, both lively and sophisticated without any compromise to comfort.
The courtyard is laid-back and leafy, with several alcoves that can be snared for groups having a few drinks after work, or tables along the decking with full service if it's dinner you desire.
The menu comprises the traditional pub fare of parmigiana and fish and chips, but don't expect a slab of tough chicken swamped in congealed cheese or a plate of overcooked batter with something unidentifiable inside - your meal will be cooked and served with care.
For those wanting more variety, there is confit duck leg and breast with poached pear, rhubarb chutney, pommes salardaise and aged port jus, house aged Hopkins River black angus porterhouse served with sundried tomato tapenade, asparagus, fries and herbed butter, or chicken ballantine with mushroom brioche tian, caper and pine-nut dressing.
It's not haute cuisine, but it does set a higher standard than your average pub, further elevated by the service. The staff is obliging, responsive and affable while maintaining a sense of professionalism, making a visit to The Malvern Hotel not only a pleasure, but also a preference.
Love how this pub is laidback and open. I'll definitely be checking this out on my next trip through town. Gastropubs like this are becoming more and more popular in New York City. It makes sense. Everyone likes the relaxed vibe of the pub and the high quality food of a nice bistro. Great article!