Restaurant News

Anchovy, Melbourne

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country right now.

By Michael Harden

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country right now: Anchovy, Melbourne.

Richmond's culinary reputation as a soggy-focaccia backwater has taken a beating in the last couple of years. The latest blow has been delivered by Anchovy, a savvy modern-Asian restaurant on Bridge Road. Owner-chef Thi Le has worked with Christine Manfield in Sydney and Andrew McConnell in Melbourne, and her menu here is driven by south-east Asian flavours - particularly Vietnamese - and framed by modern-Australian cooking techniques and plating. The short list is long on highlights, including an excellent slightly spicy Vietnamese blood pudding teamed with ginger and eaten in a cosberg leaf, little pork pátê sô (like a brilliant party pie, served with mustard and pickled fennel), raw beef served with rice crackers and big-flavoured nam vang dry egg noodles served with small chunks of chicken heart and liver tossed with a sweet yuzu kosho. There's sweet stuff, too, including some airy beignets served with a tangy passionfruit cream and condensed milk, and a booze list that features decent, decently priced wines and original, thematically correct cocktails, including an after-dinner number that's all Vietnamese coffee, condensed milk and rum. The rise of culinary Richmond continues.

Anchovy, 338 Bridge Rd, Richmond, (03) 9428 3526

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