Put down your sandwich. You’re going to want your appetite after reading this.
Adelaide’s East End is buzzing. Clipsal 500 kicks off today, the Adelaide Fringe is in full swing, Vardon Avenue is dishing up the goods on the food & wine front, and you have EVERY reason to head on in to the city to enjoy Mad March and all its goodness. Adding to the hype of this pumping precinct, is new kid on the block Restaurant Blackwood opening its doors this week.
We happened to be in the right place at the right time, and managed to order a few dishes to show you what it’s all about. With iconic Adelaide foodie destination Orana upstairs, Blackwood replaces the beloved STREET ADL which is heading to the beach (read more here), and offers up the same culinary genius of its big brother, at more affordable prices. That being said, we walked out of a dinner for 2 with a $200 bill, but we had a few glasses of vino while we were there so it was a reasonable price for what we got.
With sheer curtains creating a sense of intimacy in the evenings, Blackwood opens everything up during the day to maximise light and make the most of the street scene. With a familiar layout to previous tenants, there has been just enough tweaks to make it feel like a new venue, including a brilliant long table setting up the back, and rustic wooden tables throughout.
But you’re here to find out about the food right? Well it’s good. Really good. But that’s no surprise with food magician Jack Zonfrillo at the helm of this ship. The team he’s put in place to run the show are slick, and sommelier Louis Schofield (previously at East End Cellars) has enough personality and wine knowledge to make you want to sample everything on the wine list.
With a focus on ethical, sustainable products, similar to Jock’s philosophy at Orana, both the menu and wine list have a peppering of Organic products. It all leans towards ‘truthful’ experiences, where as little manipulation is done as possible, to ensure the flavours reflect the produce they came from.
The menu is split into entrees, mains and after dinner delicacies, all ideal for sharing. Entree prices range from $22-$26. Mains are $34-$38, and after dinner dishes are $18-$23.
Better yet, try the Tasting Menu for $90 food only/ $140 with wine. It pulls together the salad of kohlrabi, seared prawns (see pic above), hay cooked pork (pic below) and strawberries with macadamia cake & elderflower cream.
Adelaide Hills cheese legend Kris Lloyd is also on board, producing unique cheese specifically for Blackwood. The Kris Lloyd after dinner dish may be the first of its kind in the world. Featuring goats cheddar, a never-before-made dairy delight, the dish is paired with pancetta and lightly pickled and charred onion. It’s definitely unique. Not quite the cheese platter we’re used to, but the flavours in the cheese make it one to try. We’d probably stick to one of the sweeter dishes like the beetroot yoghurt ice-cream with sweet davidson plum next time, but we’re glad we can say we’ve tried it.
Overall, Blackwood is one to watch as the menu evolves and it makes its mark on the city dining scene, and definitely one to check out if you’re on Rundle Street this March.
Photos by Kelly Noble