Where: Esplanade Hotel
2 Gellibrand St
Queenscliff (opposite the park)
“The memorable mouthfuls of my endless Summer”
We were driving through Queenscliff the other evening and saw that the upper balcony on one of the old pubs was pumping! People everywhere, not a bleary eye in sight. A closer inspection revealed a sign regarding Henrietta’s Chicken Shop. The happy buzz about the place and the quirky modern signage was enough to earn me a date with Mr Google. What I found was good news.
If you can’t be bothered following the links, then let me summarise for you. With a very good pedigree (Owners Stewart Brookshaw and Ruth Giffney, both previously from Albert Street Food & Wine, and Chef Daniel Morgan, previously at the Fat Duck) and the most awesome views in town, Queenscliff has found itself with a fantastic new restaurant. It is apparently, a pop-up which does not bother me and may not bother you, as I am also a pop up of sorts. It might bother the locals though as I hear that they are pretty fond of the place also.
Importantly, the food is frickin’ awesome (an appropriate phrase considering the rhyme with chicken, yes? ). We ordered the Family Pack ($48). It came with crinkle cut chips, a whole rotisserie roasted chicken, the choice of three sauces, potato salad, green machine salad and coleslaw. The chicken was absolutely amazing. Best chicken I have ever eaten I think! Big call I know. 🙂
And closer now…..
Everything else was also delicious including the house made coleslaw with little jewels of raisins that have been slow cooked in vinegar and just popped with summery flavour. Maybe the best bit was that I had the three little tater tots with me and they all loved the food too. Just as much as us adults.
Hang on, that was not the best bit because, the view, the chicken, the friendly staff, the view.
Frozen Mango daiquiri with her little slurpee sisters made from REAL MANGO!
This place has been very busy apparently (I have big ears and was listening in to the locals). I am not surprised. After two bites of chicken we all declared we would be eating there every night this week.
Henrietta’s Chicken Bar is only open Tuesday to Sunday from 12 midday. The Families are apparently getting in early and there were a lot of them there by the time we left.
On my still to eat list is the Sweet corn with Manchego, lime and chilli salt ($4.50) and the Butter milk Fried Chicken Wings ($14). I overheard a fellow diner claim these to be the best in Australia, so really, they must be tried!
It is not exactly clear what the “pop up” bit about this place means, so get in while you can. I do know that it will be opening in Melbourne some time in 2015 and may even do a stint at Mount Hotham come the Snow Season. Sounds like a sensible restaurant that is living out all our dreams.
If you are lucky enough to be living down Queenscliff way, or holidaying near by, then stop in.
If you have young children, bring them! Henrietta’s Chicken Bar is a little summer gift to all us parents who follow our little midgets around all holiday hoping we are creating life long memories for them. (Good ones.) Eating chicken on this deck with a little mango daiquiri in hand will be the little sweet spot in your own holiday. And the kids will be happy too. Sweet as! See the way I am picking up the surfer lingo? Now to learn to surf……
Happy Eating people! xx