Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Boathouse at Balmoral Beach

Despite the 62% rating in, I still have the urge to see what The Boathouse has to offer. So I went to the one in Balmoral Beach, since it's the closest one to CBD and I can't be bothered to wake up early on such a gloomy morning to go to the one in Palm Beach. It is located only 10km outside CBD, so about 15 minutes drive or 30 minutes bus ride and you're there...

I went for a Valentine's day brunch, but arrived so late that I got there at 12pm. Sadly, the breakfast menu was over by 11.30am, so I was left with lunch menu to choose from. It was a gloomy morning and I was already disappointed by the weather. I was expecting a bright sunny morning on the beach to sip my morning (afternoon) coffee on the deck. Fortunately though, it didn't rain at all. But I was still disappointed by the fact that I need to choose from the lunch menu, because sadly nothing is appetizing to me. 

Anyway, here's a throwback to Valentine's day...

The Boathouse has a lovely location right on the beach stretching out to the jetty. I was welcomed by a pretty display framing the entrance and inside was filled with fresh produce on display.

Here, you get the experience and atmosphere of a casual sea-side dining, with light breeze from the sea and the sound of the wave. Very picturesque. Very relaxing. Especially if you have been spending most your time in the hectic CBD area, coming here on the weekend is very therapeutic.

Enter from the lefthand side if you want to find a table first or from the righthand side to order and pay at the counter first. People were lining up to order, but it took no time to reach a small alcove, greeted by a cheerful and friendly staff, to order and have small talks.

This is where you'll be when entering from the left hand side. On the left, where the staff with navy blue shirt stood, is where the baristas made their coffee. What a nice place to grind, tamp, brew espresso and steam milk. Oh I miss being a barista...

Anyway, most of the seating is outdoors on the deck. There were long white wooden tables, deck chairs and even stools overlooking to the sea (at the back area). I was too desperate looking for seats that I forgot to take a picture of the back are. Shame.

This long wooden table gets you to be closest to the sea, but there were too many Rock Dove bird flying to the table and on the railing next to the table, that I can't imagine having a pleasant convo with all those birds flying towards me, so I chose a table across to it. Still on the deck, but a little closer to the semi-indoor.

I don't always take picture of something as random as tap water bottle and glasses. I just realized how many blue-white combo I saw in the cafe, very nautical and appropriate for the setting.

Cappuccino (AUD 3.50)

It was a decent cappuccino and to enhance the already nautical setting, it was topped with chocolate anchors, again in a blue-white cup.

As I mentioned before, I wasn't excited at all to choose from the lunch menu. Most of the menu includes seafood dishes and it wasn't appealing to me at all.

The Boathouse Beef Burger (AUD 23)

And so, I got myself a beef burger. I wasn't really expecting anything awesome about this dish, cause I thought, how good can a burger be. Turns out, very. The brioche bun is amazingly fluffy inside and have the right sweet and savoriness. I am not a big fan of burger patty, but I gotta tell you this patty is very tasty. With two slices of bacon, generous melted cheese and caramelised onion. There was nothing in this burger I didn't like. Nice proportion of the filling too. (don't you just hate it when a burger is so thick, you have no idea how to start eating?) The fries were great too, but the salad is just okay.

Fried Seafood - a special (AUD 23)

My boyfriend, who's more of a seafood fan, ordered this dish. Not knowing what to expect because it simply said "fried seafood - 23" on the small board for specials and it was a little disappointing. It was simply calamari and prawn fried with a bit of flour, tossed with salt and pepper. It was served with what seemed to be mayonnaise mixed with squid ink to give it a grey-ish color and a simple salad. Some people might eat prawns whole with its skin and all. But, if you're not a fan, do not order this. The prawn was so small that you won't be able to peel the skin. Nevertheless, the prawn and calamari both tasted pretty good and well seasoned.

I recommend ordering the Beer Battered Flathead here as the waiter had been bringing it out to almost every table and it smelled and looked amazing. Too bad the food we ordered weren't amazing.

Back to the interior, I love how they used fish-pots as light-shades, and notice the blue-white walls.

It was a gloomy afternoon in Balmoral beach, but it was lovely. Here's what the cafe looks like from afar.

 Despite the food, it was a good dining experience, thanks to the location :)

Food: 7/10
Ambience: 9/10
Price: $$

2 The Esplanade
Balmoral Beach, NSW 2088

The Boathouse on Urbanspoon

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