Monday, October 05, 2009

Olives (Brighton) 09

This popular mixed Mediterranean style suburban café/bistro serves substantial dishes of fish, meat and pasta accompanied by excellent home made bread and lightly flavoured olives in a very mild, herb infused, olive oil. It is simply furnished with small cloth covered tables in two rooms separated by a long covered walkway. All the staff were extremely amiable but, apart from the proprietor, had little idea about the food. They are fully licensed but for $10 BYO is welcome but not quite welcomed. The Entertainment Book has a voucher for Olives for up to $35 discount for the lesser priced of the meals you order. The menu then excludes a couple of th dishes from discounts. Worse still, if you chose to drink your own wine you cannot use the voucher. In effect this very ordinary café is saying your corkage is effectively up to $45 on your first bottle of wine! This is all a bit strange since they have a small wine list with several bottles under $40.
When I suggested we split the table so, with no voucher we drank the wine and our friends used the voucher and did not have the wine they didn’t like it, initially said “No, it’s one table.”, but then said OK because they didn’t want to argue.
After the olives, courtesy of the café we had a platter of mixed dips-
Tzadiki, eggplant and an egg salad. This was a smallish serve for $18, with plenty of bread. We followed this with a grilled Saganaki, ($14)
which was dry and leathery, on a bed of rocket.
For mains we had a large fillet of barramundi,
lightly cooked as requested, under a white sauce with a couple of very nice scallops and a couple of mussels on a bed of mash potato, again decorated with plenty of rocket. A spaghetti marinara, which I’m told was nice though it didn’t look very special at all had the usual covering of rocket.
A mixed grill on a plain overcooked bed of rice which added nothing but a little carbohydrate to the meal. No need to guess this was also adorned with rocket!!
A dessert of sticky date pudding with vanilla bean ice cream ended a very ordinary meal.
Their arrangements in regard to discount offers are not really in the spirit of the Entertainment Book.
Comment: A filling meal in a café distinguished by liberal use of rocket and little else Their boast that they serve some of the best seafood is not sustained by the dishes they serve.
At best it is a simple family style restaurant. Simple in every way from the decor to the food and service.Score: 12/20

1 comment:

Elliot & Sandra said...

Quite often people send us commenis by email but do not add them to the posts Here's one published with permission.

I was interested to read your review on "Olives Restaurant". My colleague
and I dined there last ---day evening and would entirely agree with the
comments on your blog 1001 Dinners.
The table for two we were seated at was unbelievably small which meant the
bottle of wine we ordered had to sit on the floor. Once delivered to the
table, the waiter seemed to absolve himself from any further responsibility
in relation to pouring the wine. That was left to me for the remainder of
the evening.
I was also amused to read your comments on the over abundance of rocket as a
garnish. It would seem this is the flavour of the month and the more the
I was interested at the make up of the dish I tried which was flathead tails
spring roll. Overcooked, it arrived with not only an abundance of rocket but
even more coriander. Just as well this is my favourite herb!
Our main courses,both lamb were disappointing. I seriously question the
ability of a "chef" who is unable to deliver pink lamb to the plate.
Your final comment on the blog summed it up beautifully!