Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country this week including The Bourbon, Tonka, Green Beacon Brewing, and Fervor.
Okay, so they're probably not gonna score a cameo on Treme any time soon for their fidelity to the true New Orleans, but the new-new Bourbon (pictured) definitely gets the Big Easy's more-is-more vibe right. Jumbo shrimp? Tick. Monster pork crackling as a bar snack? Tick. Beignets and pecan pie? Tick and tick. Epic pork cutlet covered in Woodford Reserve bourbon butter with greens smothered in bacon and more butter? Very big tick. And no, these aren't Heart Foundation ticks. It's open early, it's open late, it's open right now. Laissez les bons temps rouler. The Bourbon, 22 Darlinghurst Rd, Potts Point, NSW, (02) 9035 8888. PAT NOURSE
The Coda team's latest food venture channels India in a large, clean-lined, high-ceilinged space with views across the railway towards the MCG. With a wine list by Travis Howe and co-owners Mykal and Kate Bartholomew leading the floor charge, the former Honky Tonks nightclub space is already operating with a reassuring, elegant aplomb. Add Adam D'Sylva's excellent, vibrantly flavoured food - a tuna tartare flecked with ginger and pomegranate and served with rice pappadums, Punjabi masala lamb cutlets, a luscious, deep-flavoured Goan fish curry, smoky, juicy chicken from the tandoor, sweet little silver leaf-topped gulab jamun - and there's a real feeling of a new day dawning for Indian cuisine in Melbourne. Tonka, 20 Duckboard Pl, Melbourne, Vic, (03) 9650 3155. MICHAEL HARDEN
Green Beacon Brewing
You've got to admire a beery inner-city pit stop that eschews the funk of the deep fat-fryer in favour of fresh local seafood and decent cheese. At this microbrewery, it's more about what's in your glass than on your plate. But behind the wide warehouse roller door, alongside the stainless steel vats and taps, you'll also find dinky enamel dishes of fat, trawler-sourced prawns and wooden boards with Chouquette baguettes, La Vera Farmhouse cheddar, Milawa Blue and more. Pull up a glass-green stool to the shiny wooden counter - or if you're speedy, nab a berth at a no-frills wooden table - and taste the likes of a deliciously bitter Penny Porter or a hoppy, spicy-nosed Windjammer IPA while contemplating your next pour. Green Beacon Brewing, 26 Helen St, Teneriffe, Qld, (07) 3252 8393. FIONA DONNELLY
Family get-togethers can be trying affairs, but expect good things when Paul and Bree Iskov host the inaugural Fervor dinner at Fair Harvest this Sunday. An idea conceived during the siblings' travels through Europe last year, Fervor is about native ingredients, sustainability, deliciousness and fun. Paul, sous-chef at Perth's Restaurant Amuse, recently returned home after staging everywhere from Noma to Coi and Pujol to D.O.M.; Bree is a seasoned hospitality pro. So what's for dinner? Count on the go-Aussie likes of Suffolk lamb breast with bunya nut, fermented riberries and crisp saltbush buds paired with wines and other drinks from artisan south-west producers. Dinner is $80pp (cash-only, folks) and bookings are essential: phone 0450 973 813 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on the venue see the Fair Harvest website. 426 Carters Rd, Margaret River, WA. MAX VEENHUYZEN