One of my favourite things about the Queen’s Head Hotel is their constantly evolving menu. With Chef Ben Smith at the helm, the menu changes seasonally and only the best locally sourced ingredients are used. We’ve already made several trips to the Queen’s Head so we’re not going to dwell too much into their background. It was only last weekend that they released their new Winter menu and we were more than excited to sample some of their offerings. All food and drink were provided free of charge.
First up was the Chargrilled South Australian Prawns with soba noodles, coriander salad and sticky chilli. The prawns were juicy and succulent with lovely smokey flavours. The noodles were firm and the coriander salad was refreshing. It was such a light and simple dish, and a great way to start off proceedings.
The Fried Barramundi was served chargrilled fennel, artichoke, orange and fried curry leaf. The barramundi fillet was soft, delicate and perfectly cooked. The crispy skin was undoubtedly the highlight and each bite made you forget about everything else. The citrus flavour from the orange was a nice touch and gave the dish more acidity.
The Pulled Pork Belly Bun was a favourite. The pork belly was well seasoned and crispy, and there were generous amounts of it. The coleslaw added a crunchy texture and the chipotle mayonnaise really packed a lot of heat. It’s perfect for those who want excitement in their lives.
The Tempura South Australian King George Whiting was served with chips, fennel, apple and sour cream slaw. The fish was soft and delicate, and encased in a light crispy coating. The slaw added a nice crunchy texture with the apple adding touches of sweetness.
The South Australian Crispy Squid was served with a green papaya salad, nam jim and kim chi. The squid was lightly battered and fried to a light golden brown. It was juicy and cooked to perfection, and I was surprised at the generous serving size. On its own, the squid was a tad salty, but when eaten with the refreshing papaya salad, it was a match made in heaven. A classic pub dish working in harmony with modern Asian flavours.
The 1.1kg Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder was a challenge on its own as it will easily feed 2-3 people. The lamb was well seasoned and the meat simply fell off the bone. Accompanied with a serving of fries and green vegetables, it’s a perfect dish for the cold Wintery weather.
First of the desserts was the Poached Rhubarb with orange rhubarb gel, passion fruit sorbet, oat and peanut crumble. The sorbet was light and refreshing, and complemented the sweetness of the rhubarb. The oat and peanut crumble had elements of a breakfast, and added a nice crunchy texture to the dessert.
The favourite desssert was the Cardamon Brulee with burnt orange ice cream, fennel and pistachio crumbs. The brulee had a perfectly thin caramelisation that was easily broken with a tap of a spoon. The crunchiness of the caramel topping was further enhanced by the crumbs. The custard base was smooth and creamy with a lovely thick consistency. The contrast in temperature between the brulee and the ice cream was a real treat.
Last but not least was the Chocolate Fudge Brownie with chocolate hazelnut sauce and marshmallow ice cream. The brownie was firm and chewy on the outside with a soft, spongy centre. The chocolate was rich and decadent, and was well complemented by the hazelnut sauce. The ice cream was smooth and creamy with a crunchy surprise in the centre.
All too often, a positive experience at an eatery is followed up by a not so positive one. We’d like to applaud the staff at the Queen’s Head for their consistency. The food is on point, the staff are friendly and attentive, and the atmosphere is casual and relaxed. With the Adelaide Oval so close, it’s an ideal place to come after a game, catch up with friends for a drink or simply have a decent meal.
WHERE: 117 Kermode St, North Adelaide