You can feel the rockabilly vibe as soon as you step into Le Bon Ton. A taste of New Orleans in the back streets of Collingwood this old pub has been turned into a beautiful looking saloon which manages to stray just on the right side of hipster rather than theme park. The best part of Le Bon Ton though is the outside courtyard which is a real sun trap with its astro turf and fairy lights strung from trees.
Two smokers in the corner indicate that American food is taken seriously at Le Bon Ton. That’s no surprise given Le Bon Ton is owned by two American brothers, Will and Mick Balleau (the pair behind Richmond’s Chingon) and the kitchen is headed up by another two American brothers, Jeremy and Christopher Sutphin (ex-Fog).
The bright red colour of Le Bon Ton’s chicken wings ($13 for 6) is a giveaway to their fiery coating. These are wings with some real kick! Underneath the chicken is tender and creamy sauce and celery on the side bring some relief from the heat.
The burger ($16) at Le Bon Ton is the business. There’s a sweet and fluffy brioche bun, crunchy lettuce, salty bacon, oozing cheese and a well cooked Wagyu patty. I wasn’t as impressed with the “sandwich” of pulled pork shoulder ($16). The pulled pork had a great smoky taste to it but was overly sweet and sticky.
While the food sometimes lacks in finesse, Le Bon Ton oozes atmosphere and is certainly a fine drinking den.
Essentials: Le Bon Ton, 51 Gipps street, Collingwood (Ph 03 9416 4341)
Kids: On a sunny day the outdoor courtyard is pretty kid friendly.