Garagistes — Hobart,Tasmania
103 Murray Street no reservations
The concept of all community tables, small plates, seasonally grown and locally sourced ingredients, paired with wines from around the world seemed right up my alley. But this new foodie mecca in Hobart didn’t live up to all the hype. The industrial space was pleasingly simple. The service very attentive. But the food wasn’t great on this night, to my dismay.
A Friday evening, the restaurant was shockingly only half full and the menu seemed to lack the more adventurous items I had been told to expect. Although traveling alone, I did manage to hook up with two visiting Sydney-siders for dinner. Together we shared a recommended 5 small plates, 1 desert, 1 cheese course and a bottle of wine. Total cost $250.
It started out well. We all agreed the bread was the best we had ever had. The thinly skewered tongue starter in a smokey sweet glaze was a highlight. The Wagu beef main, however, was tough — something I didn’t think was possible. And the plum tart dessert special was reminiscent of a deep fried McDonalds pie from my childhood, if you can believe it. As an American, I was somewhat surprised to see Cabot Vermont cheddar cheese on the menu especially because, here, that is a grocery store item. We opted instead for the Manchego from Spain which was a nice ending after the deep-fried tart failed us.
The biggest disappointment was leaving hungry. I even felt compelled to nab a freshly baked cookie back at my hotel where the chef was eagerly awaiting my report before heading off to bed.