Lunch Review: Hooked
If you're after fancy fish and chips, Hooked is where it's at. The Brunswick Street store has just unveiled its summer menu, and I couldn't think of a better place to chow down during the warmer months over a bottle of cider.
Inspired by a recent trip to New York, hooked owner Ray Good unveiled his new menu to a select few at lunch in the sunshine ahead of the September 14 launch. Ray worked with Papa Goose head chef Neal White on the assortment of delicious fresh new additons, while also being heavily influenced by the Manhattan oyster bars and Mexican food carts of his East Coast trip. The pair have known each since meeting in London, where Neal was working under Marco Pierre White and Gordon Ramsay.
Fish tacos are so in right now. The Hooked version, a soft shell blue grenadier fish taco is deliciously tangy and blows Taco Truck out of the water ($8.90). Freshly shucked Coffin Bay oysters taste as though they've just been scooped out of the ocean and come with either a soy and mirin sauce or sherry mignonette ($9.90 ½ dozen, $19.90 dozen or $2.50 each) . The tuna nicoise salad, complete with large seared chunks of tuna steak still pink in the middle is definitely the best this writer has had ($17.90). Chips are chunky and achieve the perfect level of crunch. A barramundi burger is also on the summer menu, although comes off a bit bland in comparison to the other delectable options ($13.90). All these items have been added to the stable of fish and chip shop favourites, including calamari, fish and the rest.
Located across the road from Polyester, Hooked has the casual vibe of a fish and chip shop coupled with the thoughtful cuisine of a fine seafood restaurant. Diners can sit out on Brunswick Street, in an open plan set up in the shop or in the lovely courtyard out the back.
Hooked Brunswick street follows on from the success of its Chapel Street counterpart and has been open for a year. The new summer menu will also be mirrored at the South Yarra store. Melburnians are clearly hungry for this style of eating: between the two stores they go through 2 tons of chips and 600kg of fresh fish every week.
Do yourself a favour and give Hooked a visit this summer.
BY ROSE CALLAGHAN
Hooked is located at 172 Chapel St, Windsor and 384 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy. They’re both open from 12pm – 9pm Sunday – Thursday and 12pm – 10pm Friday – Saturday.