Sunday, October 20, 2013

Opening of The Grain Store and Hero Sub

The Grain Store

A couple of months ago, I was invited to the opening of The Grain Store -- a new cafe that just opened in the Western end of the CBD. Opened by the same masterminds behind The Reading Room (another cafe which I LOVE), Michael and Eleena, I knew that it was going to be a hit. 

The place was buzzing when I arrived. The hosts were generous enough to let me bring my 3 mates along, which made for a good way to spend our Friday night -- woohoo!

They served an array of canapes that night. There wasn't much food to be had as I got there late after work but the mouthfuls that I had were DELICIOUS. 

Me alongside the wonderful team behind The Grain Store as well as my awesome #ttvn buddies Ashley and Adrian

Thanks for the great night, guys!

Soy Piccolo Latte -- $4

A few weeks ago, I finally went over to The Grain Store for brunch. This time, with the fantastic company of Daisy, Ricky and Jo.

Chilli & Fennel Sausage, Vanilla Parsnip -- $ 17
with poached egg, savoy cabbage, pear and cumquat chutney

Grilled Asparagus & House Smoked Salmon -- $19
with poached egg, goats curd, blood orange, crispy quinoa

Portobello Mushroom & Raclette Potato Rosti -- $18
with poached eggs, hazelnut hollandaise

Bacon Steak & Smoked Jalapeno Cheese Croquette -- $19
with egg sunny side up, pea salsa, whipped goat's feta, apple balsamic

Rosemary Polenta Chips -- $8

Lavender & Buttermilk Panna Cotta -- $12
with poached pear, earl grey, salted pepitas, sugar bubbles

The Grain Store really had become the talk of the town ever since they opened. From what I hear, it is CONSTANTLY packed out no matter when you go. What I appreciated about this place most is that it is finally giving the CBD what it has been severely lacking: which is another brunch option. At the same time, I think it's great that they have a nice, big, comfortable venue that allows you to take bookings, which is so rare for brunch places.

Overall, I think the menu is interesting in a sense that you are getting more than you realise on the plate. Not in terms of quantity, but the number of components and complexity that went into producing each element. 

In terms of taste, I don't think I was too blown away. It was good, but the overall dish didn't really hit home for me, unlike the brunch menu at The Reading Room. There was creativity involved, but some pairings were a little odd for my liking. The panna cotta unfortunately left us with a bit of a mixed and confused sensation in our mouths. My bacon steak was nice and salty on its own but together with the salted savoy cabbage on my plate, it was a little bit much. Although, my bacon steak as well as the dessert were the only 2 dishes that I found to be a bit off. Daisy, Ricky and Jo had much better luck as I found all their dishes to be quite delicious. 

At the end of the day, I'm just happy that they take bookings and it's a decent option if people are looking to grab brunch in the CBD. Oh, and they serve good coffee too.

The Grain Store on Urbanspoon

Hero Sub

Not too long after the opening of The Grain Store (which has been thriving ever since), the same visionaries behind that establishment had invited my friends and I over to the opening of their latest venture: Hero Sub!

All photos taken with my iPhone as I was too much of a nuff nuff to remember to bring my camera. Although, do check out their website because the photos of their food seriously AMAZING!

1. #Catcher
Panko crumbed shrimp tossed in hero secret seasoning, slaw, finished with housemade thousand island dressing

2. #Throwback
Veal, pork, orange and fennel meatballs simmered in Nonna's homemade sauce with baby spinach & shaved grana padano

3. #KidRoyale
Smoked hickory rub, slow roasted beef with onion jam, honey dijon, baby spinach, finished with crispy onioin rings

4. #Brklyn
10 hour pulled lamb, shredded pickle beetroot, baby spinach & herb-whipped feta

Located just behind the new RMIT building on Swanston St, I LOVED the concept and vibe as soon as I saw it from the outside. Inspired by the streets of Brooklyn in NYC, Hero Sub serves up a mean selection of cool, grungy subs with a hip hop beat (literally). The staff were all decked out in their cap, sweaters and kicks with a bit of bling around their neck while they played old school hip hop in the background. It was way cool, I loved it.

I am happy to say that every single one of the subs we had was insanely delicious! No two subs were anywhere alike and they all had so much flavour and attitude. It was seriously good. Although, my favourite that day has got to be the #KidRoyale. The hickory smoked meat with the ultra crisp onion rings against the sweet onion jam was too good to be true! My mates and I deemed this our favourite of the day.

Overall, Hero Sub really is on to something here. It's a quick and affordable bite to eat in the CBD, perfect for people who want a quick lunch on the go. The subs are memorable, as you will find when you taste one for yourself. 

There really is no stopping Michael and Eleena as everything that they touch just turns to gold. Look at how well The Reading Room and The Grain Store are doing right now. They not only are so seasoned in the industry, but are also great people to be around and I'm very happy for their continuous success. Thank you again for inviting my friends and I over to try your delicious food, I'm sure that Hero Sub is going to be another sure fire hit!

Hero on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: Winston and friends dined as guests at The Grain Store and Hero Sub. All opinions are honest and based on own personal experience at the time.

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