MPD Steak Kitchen CBD Pop Up
Berwick’s award-winning steak restaurant MPD Steak Kitchen has launched a pop up in the CBD, and The World Loves Melbourne was invited along as a guest. With rave reviews and award winning dishes, we were keen to experience popular signature dishes that featured steak, but not just steak.
Until April 13, Melburnian meat enthusiasts can delight in the opportunity to try the tastes of award-winning Berwick restaurant MPD Steak Kitchen, without having to travel the distance. In our opinion this is a great concept, and we feel it's well worth the drive to Berwick to experience on of Victoria's best steak restaurants.
Popping up for three weeks only, Executive Chef Chris Bonello (formerly of Vue Group) is serving up a curated menu of contemporary Australian fare, composed of the venue’s past and present signatures, along with a range of the highest quality steak for which MPD is renowned. Melt in your mouth steak goodness.
Popcorn chicken, chilli mayo was a great start, highlighting one of the most popular dishes at MPD Steak Kitchen. Melt in your mouth buttery popcorn chicken is a must order, perfect with the nuanced heat of the chilli mayo. They keep it extra crunchy with oats and super tender by using the best chicken thighs marinated in buttermilk. The chickpea fries were also delicious.
Gin cured Ora King Salmon, apple, cucumber, horseradish was another hit, along with a dose of theatre. One of my favourite seafood pleasures is King Ora Salmon with its exquisite flavour and creaminess. This dish is cured overnight with a mixture of herbs, spices and gin to infuse the salmon with even more floral and botanical flavours. Delicate slices of salmon are served with textures of apple and cucumber with a stunning splash of horseradish snow. Innovative and delicious.
We ordered the 8 course Chef's menu degustation with matching wines - a great way to go. This is great value and gives you a selection of "greatest hits" dishes. Chris Bonello is on top of his game and bring flair and technique to the menu. Sometimes with steak restaurants the chefs rely too much on the quality of the cut of the steak, but it's "what you do with it" that counts.
Another triumph is the Eggplant terrine, baba ganoush, kale, brick pastry. Eggplant is my favourite vegetable and this dish featured delicious layers of baked eggplant. With the house made Baba ganoush also featuring eggplant, this dish was an eggplant lovers delight. Welcome was the crunch of the crispy fried kale and brick pastry. A standout all vegetable dish in a steak restaurant!
Modern vibe with New York undertones.
Chris Bonello takes a great piece of steak (or seafood or even vegetables) and brings loads of technique and imagination around quality produce with a plethora of elements. Dishes are full of flavour and well balanced. And Chris is not afraid of salt and butter, which is right up our alley.
Guests can relish in fresh seafood starting with delicate dishes such as spanner crab with crayfish butter, finger lime and flatbread, reflecting Bonello’s culinary finesse and breadth of experience in fine dining.
Mains including skate with Jerusalem artichoke, jamon crumble, nasturtium and foraged greens demonstrate MPD’s seasonal philosophy, while steak cuts like Mayura Station Wagyu Rump Cap (grain fed and score 7+ full blood) show its commitment to exceptional, locally-sourced produce. It's difficult to prepare Skate and we appreciated the effort involved. This was a perfect example of the technique and sophistication of MPD Steak Kitchen.
Each course was a hit as far as we were concerned with no weak links. The diversity of the pop up menu was impressive.
A joyous dining experience with flair.
Flinders Island lamb shoulder, thick skirt, pickled cabbage, pear, baby vegetables. It's tempting to label everything "melt in your mouth" here, but it's true. This pretty dish featured world class Flinders Island lamb, and for me the thick skirt was also a highlight.
A tight list representing the best of MPD Steak Kitchen’s cocktail offering and 250-strong wine list complements the menu, designed and poured by Venue Manager and Sommelier Marcus Fabian. Marcus and his staff were extremely hospitable and MPD Steak Kitchen is known for its standout service.
Main course was also a triumph featuring Mayura Station Wagyu Rump Cap (grain fed 7+ full blood). This was a delightful upgrade option on the Chef's tasting menu. Easy to cut through this high score Wagyu and I loved the "fat piece" on the end. Perfectly cooked and a great example of the high class steak offerings at MPD Steak Kitchen.
Paired with a smoky cocktail.
This is a highly recommended culinary experience for steak lovers, but not just steak lovers. It's a top notch restaurant in every respect including a modern vibe. If MPD Steak Kitchen is showcasing their product to lure people to Berwick in the burbs then this is a success (only 45 min from the city). Grab your table at the pop up before April 13.
Dessert was a surprise - I wasn't expecting a basil hit but it worked. Mandarin mousse, basil was an innovative dish with the basil ice cream delicious and not overpowering. The combination of mandarin and basil was excellent.
Affogato to finish a fabulous culinary evening. Highly recommended.
The MPD pop-up Kitchen is housed in the space formerly known as MoMo Restaurant below the Grand Hyatt within Melbourne’s Spice Market.:
● Address: Beaney Lane, Melbourne VIC 3000
● Date: 26 March - 13 April
● Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday, 5:30pm-late
● Reservations: Available via the MPD Steak Kitchen website:
● Diner instructions: Walk down Beaney Lane and up the stairs at the end to find an elevator. After descending, guests will be met by a friendly MPD host.
Awarded Restaurant of the Year at the 2018 Australian Hotels Association Awards, MPD Steak Kitchen continues to deliver contemporary Australian cuisine worth travelling for, but for three weeks only, the venue team will bring it to city dweller’s doorsteps