Goodbye St Ali North and hello Green Park. This new cafe/bar/restaurant (I’m tempted to use the awful word “eatery”) opened yesterday and I was invited to a preview night with other media and blogger types to check it out.
I was a fan of St Ali North so I’m sad to see it close but I’m also excited by what owner Jesse Gerner has created to replace it. There’s been a bit of subtle redecoration. A lick of (green) paint, books, shelves and plants make the space feel cosier. What used to be a coffee retail area and a bit of dead space has now been turned into a great bar area. I recommend the Green Park Tonic for a pre or post dinner drink.
Gerner is the man behind Anada and Bomba in the city so there’s a Spanish influence to the menu but what Gerner is doing at Green Park is more broad ranging than that. Yes there are oozing cheesy croquettes on the bar menu to snack on but there’s also a tangy kingfish ceviche ($17) dotted with avocado, coriander and some chipotle and jalapenos to spice things up a bit.
Other good picks are the meaty pork and rabbit terrine ($14) which was served complete with zingy cornichons and the simple vibrant spring asparagus with aioli. Then you start to stray into the dinner menu proper which works out at two courses for $30 or three for $40. On offer are dishes like crisp skinned snapper on top of slow cooked zucchini and rich sticky beef ribs.
My favourite dish of the night was probably the side of fried potatoes which came doused in lashings of garlic butter. These were crunchy but also fluffy and are really a must order.
Sweets were in the form of pastries from Park St Pastries – check out the salty caramel donut. The pastries are available all day alongside coffee and brunch style dishes. I’m looking forward to going back and checking this out especially since Gerner is promising Green Park will still be child friendly despite its new grown up night time vibe. Any review of a preview night is always fraught with problems (there was free booze – of course it was good!) but I genuinely like what I’ve seen so far of Green Park.
Gourmet Chick was invited to review Green Park.
Details: Green Park, 815 Nicholson Street Carlton North (Ph 03 9380 5455) Open daily 7am-11pm . No bookings.
Kids: Very kid friendly. There are high chairs, toys, a kids menu and an amazing playground right outside.
Damage: Pricey. But on this occasion I did not pay.