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La Luna Bistro - Tue, 18th Nov 2008
320 Rathdowne Street, Carlton Nth
Ph: (03) 9349 4888
Prices: Mains: $28-$48.50
Style: Modern Australian, meat specialist
25th Apr 2018

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  3 : Vue de Monde
  4 : Bistro Guillaume
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  2 : Jacques Reymond
  3 : The Lake House
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Review by Lachie
More Rathdowne Street Goodness

Set on the corner of Rathdowne and Lee St in North Carlton, La Luna Bistro has been on our list of places to go for some time. We have been once before but it was some time ago, although Sarah still raves about the glorious half a roast duck she had for main last time. On this occasion there was a function on in the main dining room, so we were shown to a table for two in one of the upstairs dining rooms. While we did not really go for the decor (a kind of cow print wallpaper), the room was intimately lit and our table had a pleasant aspect of Rathdowne street below.

The faux-cow wallpaper is not the only clue that La Luna is quite enamoured with meat of most sorts, but of the bovine variety in particular. Drawings of animals labeled with the various cuts adorn the walls downstairs. Another give away may be owner-operator chef Adrian Richardson's imaginatively titled book: MEAT - How to choose, cook & eat it.

Continuing along the meaty theme, we enjoyed an entree platter of house cured meats. Five varieties, plus pickles, olives, oil & breads($17.50). We paired this with a glass of Silver Wings sparkling white, which brings me to a point about the La Luna wine list. A full page is dedicated to "The Little Guys", a selection of wines (of which the White Wings was one) from Boutique Victorian wineries which may otherwise not get a look in on a restaurant's list. While selecting one of these may seem risky if you do not know the winery in question, we found our selection extremely palatable, and I would recommend a quick scan of this page if you are willing to put your trust in the sommelier.

Once again continuing with a meat theme, Sarah decided on the steak for main. La Luna age their own steaks and always have a selection of cuts to choose from depending on the night you go. Tonight it was a scotch fillet or a rump, with Sarah opting for the fillet, served rare. I chose one of the specials, a beef and burgundy pie served with peas and beans lightly mashed. Sarah looked down on me for this choice but I have a theory on pies: whenever a pie is on offer, take it; everyone else may scoff, but when the meal is served they will all wish they ordered it too. Tonight was perhaps an exception to that rule, while the pie was as good as I expected and I enjoyed it immensely, Sarah would not have traded her steak for it (although she may have traded her steak for the half a duck I mentioned previously.

When the dessert menu arrived we didn't really need to see it. We knew what we wanted, and I strongly suggest you follow our lead on this. The desert platter for two. A selection of six deserts gives you a good feel for what the kitchen has on offer in this department; that being said, there were no shortage of other contenders on the menu that could have tempted me away from the platter. The six tastings included a chocolate and a coffee ice cream, citrus sorbet infused with lavender, lemon tart, pannacotta, a chocolate brownie, and creme brulee. If your mouth is not watering after having read all of that then we must have very different tastes.

Overall it was a very enjoyable evening, and I'm extremely glad that we returned to this bistro once again. It has been 4 or 5 years since our last visit but now that it has re-entered my thoughts I can't imagine that it will be that long before we return again.


We ate:
Entree: House cured meat platter
Main: House aged scotch fillet
Main: Beef and Burgandy Pie
Desert Dessert tasting platter for two.

We drank:


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