The Table Lamp Excites With New Direction
The Table Lamp restaurant in the CBD has had a revamp and is bringing richly rewarding Asian fusion to Melbourne. A redesign of the menu, change in personnel and changes to decor and vibe are a radical departure from the previous offering. We were invited to sample the new menu and check out the recent changes at The Table Lamp.
The World Loves Melbourne has a soft spot for The Table Lamp since it opened at the end of last year, and is impressed with new front of house manager Jacy Tan, who comes from a hospitality and marketing background in Malaysia and Melbourne (including U-Village in St Kilda).
The menu has been carefully constructed to reflect a more balanced fusion approach across Thai, Malaysian, Chinese and Vietnamese cuisines. Recently The Table Lamp hosted a highly successful fundraiser for Nepal with 100 attending and donating to this cause.
The World Loves Melbourne views the menu as rewarding and approacheable, with prices lowered and menu items hitting the spot in terms of trend and appeal. You can walk past The Table Lamp as a mysterious location, but it's well worth it to take the stairs and enter a cosy world of casual chic and Asian fusion.
For the city worker, The Table Lamp is a great option - come here for the $14 lunch specials and even the small bites for $5-7 are a winner.
Jacy, a Melbourne foodie herself, explains that Asian food should be shared, recommending that customers (say for two) order a couple of smaller dishes and a couple of larger dishes. With the mains at around or under $30 it is not an expensive night out, and the food quality is evident.
The World Loves Melbourne started with a Goat cocktail, featuring gin. The cocktail recipes have changed and we enjoyed the combinations.
We imbibed two outstanding smaller dishes, the Hat Yai Crispy Chicken and the BBQ Pork Stack.
The Hat Yai Crispy Chicken has become a hero of the recently introduced menu already, with rewarding crispy chicken on the outside and tender white meat within.
The BBQ Pork Stack was also rewarding and exceptional with a bowl of rice.
Both dishes came with a killer spicy sauce in the Thai style, not unlike Chin Chin flavours.
Looking around we noticed in a short time since the new management arrived, the lighting had changed with less birdcages and chic lamps as well as less formal chairs to replace high stools. A chic lounge has also been created for customers waiting area.
It was then we enjoyed another superb cocktail, the Monkey, featuring Vodka and sweet sour flavours of passionfruit and citrus.
The World Loves Melbourne enjoyed the popular main Twice cooked pork belly - being a pork belly tragic and all - with volcano curry. This dish had excellent balance with beautifully cooked pork belly, apple and a wonderful hot volcano curry sauce.
We enjoyed the fresh tastes and full flavours of the Asian fusion, including a reasonable amount of heat in the sauces. Not overpowering but some real kick, as we like it.
A Pinot Noir didn't go astray after our cocktails.
For dessert we enjoyed a standout dish of Banana in a Parcel - banana wrapped in coconut infused sticky rice and a banana leaf, served with coconut ice cream. A highlight was the flavours of the sticky rice from the banana leaf infusion. The ice cream itself was also rewarding and the combination of ice cream, sticky rice and banana was superb. We recommend this dessert as a highlight. Highly recommended.