The phone rings, and as the waiter picks it up he replies, “Welcome to Hell”. No, this is not a post about some kind of weird fetish dream of mine with demons and infernos. Shockingly enough, it’s a post about food! Since I did sleep in (a lot), and hadn’t eaten out in a while, I decided to treat myself to something a bit fancy.
Hell of the North resides in Fitzroy – which is indeed a damned neighbourhood with all the gays and mad people around (the ammount of times I was awoken by someone screaming outside). Just a short trek from my own abode (of sin), it’s hidden away on Greeves Street, and one could very easily pass by without noticing the door.
The place was quite empty and quite when I arrived (at about 6PM), which was lovely, as one could listen to the lovely playlist they had set and actually sink into the atmosphere of the place. For a moment I imagined myself in a quaint cafe in Puerto Rico – tho I have never been there before. The staff was also quite friendly, very helpful with decisions regarding their food. For starters, I went with the Prawn & Basil Fritter, Chilli Caramel (4$), which was quite crispy and well done. Enjoyable even tho I stay away from many things that come out of the ocean.
For some reason I had fish for main. Again, the sea! I did remember why – because the other ones that seemed good either had curry (I don’t like curry) or sweet potato (I don’t like sweet potato). The John Dory, Prawn Mousse, Fennel Salad & Crab Fumet (24$) was also quite delicious – especially the fumet. Accompanied by a side of pom frites (7$, fancy way of saying french fries), I gulped it downed quite fast. Fishy, but the good kind of fishy.
Clearly, I decided to go all in and get dessert as well – on the excuse that I haven’t eaten out in a while (and, to be fair, I don’t use any of the money I get from my perennial bar job). Passionfruit parfait, Coconut, Lime & Palm Sugar Sorbet, Praline & Mango (12$), it looked so pretty… it felt so good demolishing it all. The tastes were quite nice, albeit perhaps the sorbet a bit too sweet.
I must say that I had trouble deciding the grade: on one hand, the food is quite nicely done and fancy. But then, I cannot give food a better grade simply because it is “high class”. One doesn’t judge Asian food the same way one judges burgers. And whilst, again, the food was tasty, it was not more-ish. It didn’t make me want to gulp every single piece, nor did it make me have culinary revelations. Good – but not that good.