Top Paddock, Richmond, Melbourne (30 May 2015)

Top Paddock, Richmond, Melbourne (30 May 2015)

I actually skipped the ‘free‘ Qantas lounge buffet before my 7am flight to Melbourne. Therein lies the truth to my commitment to an interstate brunch at Top Paddock. Four of us today, Dave and Chey being the two locals.
A double team of soy flat white and chai tea works a charm. Note 20c extra for soy. I can afford it.
Soy flat white – $4.20

Unnecessary words in every menu item, brutal pricing and the institutionalised setup is foreboding.

Hard to find a sub $20 healthy imaginative choice. I try my best seeing ‘broccolini‘ (healthy) and ‘heidi raclette‘ (no idea, must be fancy).
Broccolini, sugar snap peas with avocado, poached egg and raclette on toast with cured trout – $18.50 + $7
Looks great, tasted OK with good crunch. I’d award a tub of Pringles the same critique.
Palate tells right away this is eggs, avocado on toast. Trout makes this $25.50, half the cost of my flight and now my wallet thinks I just walked in-and-out of Tetsuya’s. Anything special about sugar peas and broccolini? No, best left for dinner.  
My god, look at the avocado serving…
Lucky I was rescued by a cured trout fillet. Must be smoked with a deep woody flavour. Tasty, hard to fault but don’t be deceived by the photo. The trout was tadpole sized. 
Imagine a brioche, soft-shell crab burger with extra mayo. Then try to stop yourself ordering one. Impossible. 
Fresh, QLD, soft-shelled mud crab brioche roll – $21
Though it’s hard to go wrong with such a sweet sweet bun and crispy crab legs, the mayo was completely overdone. How can this burger be called ‘fresh‘, if the hero is deep fried?
Two bites in… magic. Another three bites and Lorie clutches her chest mid-chew. A mild heart attack and though I can’t prove it, my poor unborn kid was having the same reaction. 
Twenty one … the menu name word count, the cost, and the number of times I shook my head after. 
A weekend special is Dave’s choice. Won’t repeat what this was actually called but in my words, octopus tortillas with pretty salad. 
Grilled octopus and salad tortillas – $23
Two beautifully presented insults. Barely more than palm sized, squid-ink infused tortillas. Better plastered on the wall as art than ever eaten.  
Chilli and lime along with squid ink mayo
Taste-wise, may as well have been a store bought tortillas. Octopus was nice, the carb housing left untouched. 
Chey commits a cardinal sin and orders a standard poached eggs on toast. I’m too nice a guy to tell her off, not to mention she’s hosting us for the weekend. 
Poached eggs on toast with an unknown sauce – $10.50
Double digit pricing and not even finished. That’s all I can say. 
Score summary says it all:
Food – 6/10 – pleasant enough, but certainly well away from plate licking.
Value – 3/10 – over $20 for anything non-standard. Unacceptable servings. 
Other – 4/10 – long wait, inattentive service, institutional set-up.
Overall – 5/10 – all style, no substance. Very forgettable. 
Seems we have a case of the lemmings in the Melbourne blogger scene. Blind leads the blind 138 times if you look at the blog count.
Will I go again?
Top Paddock, Richmond
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