Pinch and a Punch for the first day of the Month! And for my fellow Sydney friends, its that time of the year again - March into Merivale! A couple of hooligans couldn't say no to the promise of a bonafide American Diner experience. Star Spangled banners decorated the Mad Cow steakhouse, with (albiet empty) Ketchup and Mustard squeeze bottles - get into the USA spirit!
As I nursed my non-american beer it was clear that these events in each of Merivale's restaurants really pull in the crowds. On an ordinary tuesday night, the entire dining area of Mad Cow was packed out. This $70 event featuring 5 courses which would "showcase and celebrate American diner classics" were one of the events in the program that had sold out.
Our overly hyperactive and enthusiastic table agree that head chef Christopher Whitehead had a tough crowd specifically in this table alone - with 2 of the diners including myself having fond childhood memories in the US of A and another co-eater back from a long stint of travelling through the country.
It took a while to get the meal started but I suppose such is the case when you are feeding the whole restaurant identical courses. For our amuse(ment), a corn and cheese quesadilla. We figured this was a taste of America in close proximity to the Mexican border.
Our First Entree was a chopped salad with prawns, avocado, cucumber, tomato and onions. A very light and fresh shrimp salad. California-inspired perhaps? I think a side of ranch would have made this dish a bit more American perhaps. I figured that if the American flag was featured in my photo's it would validate the dinner theme.
Our second entree was a perfectly cooked Salmon filet with crushed peas. Cooked to perfection with a rare middle and crunchy skin, we marked Alaska off the map of the USA - they catch salmon there right?