Unlike Oliver Twist though there wasn't a mean man screaming at me while others watched on and tremble. In actual fact it was a friendly and attentive waiter Tom who attended to my needs this evening.
Joes Bar located in St Kilda is Celebrating all things American this week with having Independence day on the 4th and Graham Cracker day on the 6th.
People may remember Joes as Greasy Joe's but not any more. In actual fact it's far from that we once remember. It's smooth and warm trimmings really uplift the feel to the restaurant, art work that influences the beach scene of St Kilda and chill out sessions from the Dj really set a casual yet elegant dining experience.
A genuine greeting at the door and an introduction the the regular menu and the Special weekly America themed menu is provided and explained. It was a pleasant surprise for our Waiter introduced himself by name to us. I remember the good old days where this used to happen everywhere and by golly it felt good. It had a personal feel and made me realise when I went through my training how much more relaxing it was for a patron to know who to speak to during the night. I wish more places were like this.
To start the night off we chose to enjoy some pork scratchings of which was also accompanied by the restaurants complimentary chipotle popcorn. Hand in hand a great way to start, more so interesting the popcorn instead of bread. A much lighter healthier tastebud activator that's for sure as well as being norishly good.
Any good American would love mac 'n' cheese, and to be honest I don't actually think you just have to be American. I'm pretty confident that any given person love's their Mac 'n' Cheese. But have you had them as a croquette before? A crunchy golden coating around creamy cheesed macaroni is pretty tasty.
Something you may not know about the Mac 'n' Cheese is that Maccaroni was favourable in the 18th century in Paris with various sauces. Thomas Jefferson had encounted maccaroni in both Paris and Italy, drew a picture of the pasta and wrote a detailed letter about the process.
In 1793 he commissioned the American ambassador to travel to Paris to purchase a machine to make the pasta, however it was found to be unsuitable. Jefferson later chose to import both the maccaroni and cheese. In 1802 Jefferson chose to serve a maccaroni pie at a state dinner.
Gumbo is something I have read about but never had, so it was only a given that I gave it a shot. Filled with chicken, smokes sausage and prawns this hearty stew was quiet delish. Filles with okra, peppers and spices it was almost exactly how I imagined it to be from the recipes I've read. Another 18th Century dish finding it's way into the American evening, originating from Southeren Louisiana.
I would perhaps like a couple more prawns in there, only because I love them so much. But what a great dish, a great alternative to a soup and is a definite tummy filler for these wintery nights.
A towering Joes Fried Chicken Burger is a dislocating jaw event. With a spiced golden coated thick chicken breast, so juicy it melts in your mouth finished off with chipotle slaw and jalepeno pickles is screaming yum. To share it is a deconstruction procedure but alone you are facing a triumph of completion. Small hits of spices coat your taste buds and make them tingle in pleasure, but there is no stopping you devour this pleasurable burger.
Some old fashioned Buffalo wings don't go astray served with it's troditional fresh celery and a glorious Gorgonzola on the side. Luxurious spiced coating marinates the tender wings and turn into a finger licking event. The oil drips down your fingers as you nor through the wings making sure nothing is wasted. The Gorgonzola sauce soothes out those spices and adds another tasty dimension.
Now I came to Joes by their enticing advertising of some tasty S'mores. Circulating through the Tweets it drew me towards them as I do love a good S'more. And to see that I venturing to Joes on Graham Cracker day, well hey theres no refusal to say yes to a S'more.
The Graham Cracker was created back in 1829 in New Jersey by Sylvester Graham. The original cracker was made with a graham flour of a combination of fine unbleached wheat flour, wheat bran and germ making a nutritional and flavoursome cracker. These crackers were brought together along with marshmallows and milk chocolate bars to make a simple tasty dessert called S'mores which originated in North America.
So A sweet combination of three glorious ingredients can only say one thing too you. YUM! Gooey marshmallow squished between a cracker and smothered in milk chocolate is nothing but indulgent naughty but scrumptious eating.
The last of our American eating was the Peanut butter and choc chip
ice cream sandwich. Chocolate biscuit filled with a semi sweet peanut butter ice cream and chunky chocolate chips, drizzled with chocolate sauce. If theres one things America is branded for and thats their peanut butter and chocolate combinations. This was one moment where of peanut butter and chocolate goodness, and a perfect meal ender for those lovers of this fine combination.
Joes has ticked all the boxes for me and with out a doubt will be returning to them to get my hands on their regular menu. Service was impecable and was so happy to see that the standard was high and maintained through out the night.
I was impressed that although not having the night caps that I was looking for to go hand in hand with my dessert that liquors were suggested with a taste to match their suggestion. I shake the hands of both our waiter and bar tender who can sell and promote such things.
We shall be seeing Joes again in no time.
Joes Bar and Dining Hall
64-66 Acland Street