Remember last year when we went to Taste of Melbourne? Alastair and Bro were so enamoured with the KFC (Katherine’s Fried Chicken) served by St Katherine’s, that I knew we would have to schedule a fried chicken dinner there one night.
Well, it took a while but fried chicken dinner finally happened this month, thanks to the organisational efforts of Mazza. A couple of other friends were roped in, and off we went.
Located in Kew, St Katherine’s is a big, busy restaurant seating 140 downstairs. Tables are bare and you grab your own cutlery and napkins from the tomato tin in the middle of each table. The menu has the previously fried chicken, as well as other Middle Eastern style dishes that are meant to be shared. If you don’t want to make a choice, there’s a few set menu options ranging from $45 to $75 per person.
We ordered drinks and a jug of St Katherine’s punch ($40) containing aperol, apricot brandy, St Germain elderflower liqueur, rose syrup, cranberry, apple and pineapple juice with fresh passionfruit to share before scanning the menu. The punch was really sweet – some soda water would’ve been good in it to dampen the sweetness (I added some tap water to take the edge off, sacrilege I know).
After looking at the menu, Mazza’s partner Daz demanded that we just order a bucket of fried chicken each, but we overruled him, starting off with just one bucket of chicken ($24) as well as a selection of other dishes.
One of our non-chicken dishes was the fried baby calamari ($16) with lemon, Aleppo pepper, garlic and taramasalata. It wasn’t bad – the calamari was relatively tender, though it was on the salty side.
We also had the selection of rotisserie meats from the grill ($27.50). That day it was pieces of lamb and chicken, served with a wedge of lemon. The meat was nicely charred, though again on the salty side.
This was garfish, wrapped in vine leaves with minced prawn and vanilla peaches ($18.90). Mazza ordered this because she loves garfish, but I wasn’t particularly into it. It just wasn’t to my taste I think, I’m not really into meat and fruit together, much less fruit and a very fishy fish.
I felt like we should order a salad, so we selected the leaves with hazelnuts, dehydrated shanklesh, sunflower seeds and pomegranate ($9.50). It was really, really acidic and vinegary.
And we also had chips and tarama ($9.50)
Our final non-fried chicken dish was the lebanese lamb sausage with lemon, hummus and thyme ($12). This was comped on our bill because it was forgotten about until we asked the waiter about it – how nice! Strangely, the seasoning on these wasn’t consistent. I had a piece that was incredibly salty, while someone else had a piece that was really bland.
Back to the fried chicken, which is served in a striped bucket along with Japanese mayo and BBQ sauce. Cute touch, but I wonder how many of those paper buckets they go through each day…
Each bucket held between 12-14 pieces of chicken. We found our first bucket of chicken a little underwhelming and not particularly crispy or tasty. However, we ordered another two buckets and they were much better – moist and crunchy with a good coating, though perhaps not quite as good as at Taste of Melbourne. Strange.
We didn’t have dessert, and the bill including drinks came to a pretty cheap $35pp. We initially thought that it was wrong but no – it had been totalled up correctly.
At the end of the meal we all thought it was okay. The fried chicken was good, but the other food didn’t wow me. Perhaps we should’ve listened to Daz and just ordered a bucket of chicken per person after all. However, to be fair, I don’t think we ordered well – while writing this post I had another look at the menu and there’s definitely more interesting food available.
For more on St Katherine’s see:
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26 Cotham Road
Phone” 03 9207 7477