Grand Richmond an Iconic Melbourne Culinary Experience
The Grand Richmond is surely one of the most iconic foodie experiences in Melbourne with a history of hats from the Good Food Guide. It's also one of the best Italian restaurants in Melbourne. For The World Loves Melbourne this is one of the most clued up, consistent, inventive venues in Melbourne. From killer fashion events to outstanding Mon night specials, Grand Richmond gives back to the punters. The dining room is iconic with Italian fare and The World Loves Melbourne enjoyed a lazy afternoon of indulgent degustation.
The Grand Richmond (often known just as Grand Richmond) is the masterstroke of Barnie Bouchaud and his team. One of the best value deals in Melbourne is the VIP membership for which you can sign up and receive a free birthday degustation. That's right! Worth $85! How good is that? The only requirement is to bring along a paying customer for the degustation, and of course pay for your own wine. Of course I signed up on the spot.
And so we experienced the "birthday" degustation as guests of Grand Richmond. After a tour with Barnie of the facilities (including sensational upstairs function rooms) we settled in the impressive and iconic dining room. The ambience is a standout with crispy white tablecloths, large windows, textured walls (including deer artwork) and dark carpet. It feels like an occasion visiting this restaurant. After olives and fresh bread we were served up this superb Organic beef carpaccio with mustard cress & grana padano. The beef was top grade Victorian beef and combined wonderfully with the parmesan.
Can I say every course was impressive and the overall value of the degustation teriffic. The balance was perfect with not all dishes rich and heavy. The Honey & Beetroot Salad with mozzarella and heirloom tomatoes was a highlight of flavours and textures, as well as refreshing.
The degustation features variety of tastes and this seafood dish of Seared scallops on squid ink zucchini spaghettini was rustically rewarding. Perfectly cooked scallops and the squid ink zucchini spagatini were a perfect match. How I got squid ink on my fingers I'm not sure...
Possibly the dish of the degustation was this Handmade Potato gnocchi with brown butter and sage. Italians love their gnocchi and I friends of mine also give it the butter and sage treatment. This rendition was highly impressive with soft pillows gnocchi and the sauce moorish. You won't leave much of that sauce on the plate.
Grand Richmond also delivered on the Rack of Lamb on a carrot and tarragon puree with baby eggplant. The puree was rich and wonderfully offset the perfectly cooked pink lamb. Seriously, this is a degustation for the VIP membership birthday offer - is there a better deal in Melbourne? We enjoyed the degustation with matched wines including a Bowen Estate Cabernet with the rack of lamb.
Dessert kept up the high standard with Italian doughnuts filled with caramel ice-cream, honey saffron syrup and Pistachio praline. The presentation was exceptional, the fadvent of fruit and ice cream made this not too heavy to end the degustation. This was an appealing dessert and was enjoyed with dessert wine.
Barnie is an engaging owner full of ideas and a passion for the Melbourne foodie scene. He has put on some legendary events at Grand Richmond including 300 at a Melbourne Cup event with fashion runway. Hugely popular. The Monday night deal for only $30 is great value. Quality events are reularly on the calendar.
Grand Richmond is not strictly a gastropub with a rock star chef. The dining room serves amazing fine Italian food but you'll also find the attractions here of many pubs in terms of cheaper meals and pub food favourites.
Grand Richmond isn't resting on its past success. It has opened up a series of function rooms upstairs that are outstanding for smallish events. I know corporates who have visited these rooms and rave. Stylisha nd functional, in an iconic accessible part of Melbourne.
Style and functionality also with bar facilities nearby.
Grand Richmond is taking all before it in a highly competitive scene. You meet people that know what they're doing and you get the impression Barnie and his team are talented in what they do. Highly recommended.