In a city spoilt by a healthy population by restaurants, it’s not often that I get to return to the places I love. We seem to be in a constant rush to get to the newest barely-open-line-out-the-door restaurants, and I often wonder what happens to the places that used to be in the headlines. So when Miss TPrincess’ birthday came up, it was a lovely idea to frequent Andrew McConnell’s asian inspired restaurant, Golden Fields. As I had dined here previously, I knew it would be finger lickin’ delicious (true, but maybe not in KFC style).
I wasn’t too sure how busy the place would be since its been a few years now since it opened. We were easily able to snag a table at 6:30pm on a Thursday, but an hour later even the communal tables were packed. Bookings are only taken for groups of 8 or more, but I love that they were happy to offer us either a spacious table or a seat up at the bar. It’s these little things that make you feel appreciated as a diner (eg: hand-cream in the bathroom? Thanks bro), and means I am more willing to throw my money at them! Sadly another friend couldn’t join us with demands of a real job in the real world… I’m so not looking forward to that real life thing.
The menu is structured in a share plates fashion, which is great with 2 people because you can chop and choose as you please.
The components of the dishes from ‘Raw’ always stand out beautifully, so we decided to try both the Tuna, oyster cream, pickled shiitake (17) and the Rottnest Island scallops, avocado, apple, miso (16). Both were exemplary in freshness and flavour.
Next up was the Rolled Berkshire pork belly, white kimchi, yuxiang sauce (15), which we were drawn in by the surprise inclusion of a Korean favourite. The dish surprised us on arrival, with 4 plump poached pork belly rolls. Inside was a kimchi we were not familiar with, not as spicy at all. Whilst the texture was the same, I was actually looking forward to the traditional fiery kimchi! The pork belly was soft, but not as flavoursome as I had hoped… it was instead the yuxiang sauce that was the surpringly addictive note, all freshened with the inclusion of coriander.
You can’t go to Golden Fields without trying the New England lobster roll, hot buttered bun, cold poached crayfish, watercress and Kewpie (15) which is a ridiculous price for a ridiculously good pair of sweet asian bread and dreamy crayfish. Kewpie brings this baby up one notch, with the watercress lending some crunch and colour.
From ‘Salads and Vegetables’, we next had the Szechuan braised eggplant, minced pork, rice noodle (18). The eggplant was dutifully gooey and the sauce was rich but needed something other than the rolled rice noodles to accompany it. I completely wanted this to be delicious, however it reminded me of the Eggplant and Salted Fish hotpot I so often get at the chinese local.
And last but not least, dessert! We probably could have done with one, but because we are girls and because it was kinda a special occasion, we decided try both the Baked meringue, vanilla, rose and lychee (15) and the Peanut butter parfait, salted caramel and soft chocolate (10). The crispy and gooeyness of the meringue was great with the lychee and rose, and was an exemplary summer dessert. Make sure you devour this first as the the parfait is all contrasts; a rich chocolate and peanut butter almost-overload with the salted caramel saving it from being too overwhelming. Both excellent desserts, just depending what you are in the mood for.
Maybe the reason I don’t often return to great places, is the risk of being left disappointed. Last visit it was the Twice-Cooked Duck that was definitely memorable and I was a tad sad nothing knocked the socks off me this time round. This being said, the spot on service and beauty of the space still makes for a great dining experience. Luckily it’s such an annoying tram ride to get beyond the city to Fitzroy St, otherwise I’d be complaining about the price of those lobster rolls more often.
2/157 Fitzroy St