I was bemused when I heard there was a restaurant in the suburbs of Brisbane which are shut for several months a year and every single weekend. It sounds like a recipe for failure or sheer arrogance (they are French after all) but I was desperate to see what the fuss was about and how on earth Montrachet were defying the odds in our sleepy little city.
An opportunity arose on a Monday night for a 6pm sitting and I jumped at the opportunity to dine decadently at what some say is the best restaurant in Brisbane. Walking in we were warmly welcomed into the authentic french bar and bistro full of french food loving pigs.
The menu was nothing short of mouth-watering, I was spoilt for choice but after some deliberation and coaching from our friendly waiter we decided to share the crab soufflé and the prawn ravioli. Once they came out and first bites were taken the oinks around the table were audible, shooting each other looks that can be translated to “can’t talk, eating.” The crab was rich, creamy and full of flavour and the prawn ravioli was a perfect partner as it was light, fresh and simple.
After a seafood starter the obvious choice for my main affair was the succulent steak, served traditionally with shoe string frites and béarnaise sauce. Our friendly waiter warned me that I wouldn’t be able to get through my whole meal so ordering sides was unnecessary, but I did anyway. Despite being right on the money with his wine and food suggestions, he was wrong when he said I couldn’t finish the steak. I couldn’t help but work my way through the tender, rare, juicy, HUGE eye fillet perfectly accompanied by the side salad and buttery green beans. Despite feeling like a hefty hog I had to try my fellow pigs seafood bouillabaisse which was served with fresh aioli stirred through and a french baguette to mop up the beautiful bisque, à la perfection! If a bus had driven through the french glazed windows fronting Given Terrace then and there, I would have died a happy pig.
My good judgement was telling me to stop stuffing my snout and call for the bill, but my pork belly was telling me “when will you have the chance to come here again?”. My belly had a valid point, it is no wonder this place is impossible to get into. I knew I needed to seize the moment so I ordered the crème brûlée, it was just a normal monday night after all, why not celebrate? It was a crisp, caramelised, delicate and delicious way to end one of the best meals I have had in a long time.
The bitter: The fact it is never open is pain for this pig
The sweet: Despite the food being incredible the service made it taste that much better
The damage: There was damage but cheap if you consider the quality of the food, wine, service and experience – 3 courses, sides and wine cost approximately $120 each.
Montrachet - 224 Given Terrace, Paddington QLD 4064 – www.montrachet.com.au