Monday, February 11, 2013

Slapdash does suburbia.

I don't know about you lot, but I for one am passionate about supporting local providores, artisans and small businesses in my area, and I like to make a real effort to frequent the many creative and original restaurants, cafes, delicatessans and bars in my suburb.

It is just so important to encourage the eat local, buy local mentality!  Living this way helps reduce greenhouse gases, encourages a healthy lifestyle, and ensures people are kept gainfully employed.

I've decided to do a series dedicated to reviewing some of the diverse businesses and restaurants in my local area.  These are all places I can easily walk to from my house*.  I live in outer, outer suburbia, so just goes to show, you don't have to live in trendy hipsterville inner city suburbs to embrace the "buy local" philosophy!

What hidden gems will I discover!? Let's find out...

Slapdash does suburbia - First Edition

Now, although I usually cook our family meals from scratch using purely organic free-trade, BPA-free, low-GI, and low-fructose ingredients, sometimes we feel like a bit of a break! So every now and then, we order takeaway from one of our local eateries.  We are so LUCKY to have a wonderful choice. 

When we first built our architect-designed, passively heated, thatched cottage, beaten earth hobbit house (we got the idea from an episode of Grand Designs!), there were hardly ANY shops or eateries around.  How things have changed!

Recently an interesting little establishment has opened up just down the road from us.  It's got a really unusual name, I can't quite remember it - I think "Mac - something"? Anyway, I think it might be of Scottish origin but I couldn't be sure.  As you can imagine I was intrigued! With such a Scottish name, I was excited to think what sort of menu items they would serve up!  Perhaps they were a proponent of the school of "nose-to-tail" cooking? I'm not usually a fan of offal but I am willing to give it a go in the name of sustainability!  Perhaps it was more along the lines of ole Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's River Cottage?  Whatever, I was simply DYING for a chance to pop in and check it out.

Coming home late-ish from work tonight M and I decided I would duck out and pick something up for dinner after we'd fed the kids, so my chance had arrived at last!

When I got there, I was pleasantly surprised by the decor.  A fresh, modern look, with plenty of happy young families enjoying a meal together. I looked around for the menu and the wine list (for next time, if we dined in) and then noticed it was helpfully illuminated above the counter!  What a great idea.  I scanned it hastily, hoping to see the offerings I had hoped for, sadly I couldn't see any tongue, tripe or even haggis anywhere.  For a restaurant purporting to be of the Scottish persuasion, I felt this was quite poor.  No wine list either, or even beer. It must be BYO.

Still, I am always keen to give small artisan type establishments a go in order to give them some encouragement, so I decided to overlook this false advertising and asked the somewhat surly maitre d' what she would recommend to a first-time customer?  I'm sorry to say she gazed quite vacantly and moodily at me.  Embarrassed, I quickly said "I'll have what they're having then please!", gesturing to a well built couple next to me.

"Large Big Mac Meal and Large Quarter Pounder Value Meal comin' up then," she said huffily, and flounced around getting my food ready while I waited.  Happily, despite the ominous start to the experience, the meal was ready in no time flat!  She handed it over to me in quite a cute retro paper bag arrangement.  I bid her good night and headed home with my spoils, eager to share them with M!

When I got home I quickly unpacked the food, and was pleasantly surprised at their contents.  I had a sort of warm club sandwich, with sliced dill pickles, lettuce, a slice of salty yellow and two pieces of as yet unidentified well-done meat (perhaps it was nose-to-tail after all, I might have judged too quickly!) spread with a sort of mixture of tangy jus and aioli.  I had some pommes frites on the side.  It was such an unusual combination! Despite the well-done meat (usually a foodie no-no!), it was actually delicious.  The frites were particularly well salted.  I was also pleased to see a cola beverage came with it.  No wonder it is called a "Value Meal!"




M had a similar meal, but his club sandwich was smaller and also had what I think was Dijon mustard added.





So there you have it!   Despite my initial disappointment at the lack of offal on the menu, I was then pleasantly surprised to see that our club sandwiches did indeed contained a mystery meat!

Wine list - 0/10
Service - 4/10
Food - 9/10

And I never give perfect marks!

So let's all hope this little local business gets up off the ground.  I think they have HEAPS of potential, even if their staff lack a little enthusiasm. Look they aren't perfect but they are GIVING IT A GO and by jove I want to get behind them and support them like crazy!

I hope you've all been inspired to try something in your own local area!  You never know what you might find.  Go on, do something different, you won't regret it!

Til next time.

Bon appetit!

Linking up with Jess for -

*If I lived somewhere that believed in footpaths. But walking is for losers. Apparently.

24 comments:

  1. Mcdowells?? From this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coming_to_America
    Xx

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    1. HAHA! Oh hilarious...good old Eddie...

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  2. This gave me a good laugh. Our town doesn't have footpaths either. And I believe the next town along has a similar Scottish establishment!

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    1. It's all about the car in the 'burbs on the GC. There are some paths, it's pedestrian crossings we lack! You take your life into your hands when you try and push your monster pram across the busy main road with no crossings!!

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    2. PS Thanks so much for commenting!

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  3. Ha! I should have realised by the dead giveaway - the "surly" server. Are you definitely eating beef over there? A lot of our beef is actually horse apparently. Only the super-cheapo stuff so far,God knows where it'll all end.

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    1. Who knows, Sulky, we could be eating possum for all I know!!

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  4. Where in God's name is your Jigsaw jacket? I'm waiting with baited breath here. *just sayin'*

    Love,
    A.

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    1. I'm telling you A, I will wear it on Monday AGAIN. You better be there this time!

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    2. Oh no!!!! Did I miss it that day I was away? Murphy's Law! :( PS, there were parsley garnishes aplenty here at dinnertime tonight.

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    3. Yes you missed it! And parsley makes everything gourmet...

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  5. Good on you for supporting locals Sarah - best way to keep this country local and employed!!

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  6. Love this post- firstly, I'm with you 100% on the organic, gluten-free, additives free, no sugar/ salt thing. And I also love to hear that you're supporting the little guys! Was everyone Happy with their meals?

    P.S. Hope your baby had a wonderful first birthday x

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    1. Thank you H-i-H! We didn't do anything much, but we are having a little party for him this weekend. Little darling, can't believe he is one. I better do a post about it I think!

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  7. Oh this post is clever, very clever and my family are gazing at me a little weirdly as I sit here chuckling :)

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    1. Ha, thanks Beck! I amused myself but my husband was more be-mused when he saw me picking sprigs of parsley and photographing it.

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  8. Hysterical Sarah! As a fellow outer suburbanite I sympathise with the lack of local dining options. Luckily I'm a good cook and don't mind travelling.

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    1. I hear you Di! Traveling is the course of the outer suburban dweller. The car rules round here. Thank you for commenting!

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  9. I really feel like a burger and chips now....

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  10. This post just popped up in the 'you might also like...' bit of your blog. Must have missed it the first time around. Hilarious!

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Vent your spleen! You know you want to.

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