I’ve been a bit slow on checking out Fish Head, but all the reports that I’ve heard have been very positive. Like many of his other successful businesses, Walter Ventura is once again behind the scenes, this time serving up a South East Asian fusion of Malay, Indonesian and a touch of Indian. The menu is well laid out with everything on a single piece of paper. Customers can choose from small Hawker dishes or more substantial Luxe offerings. Superstar Chef, Nu Suandokmai once worked here and is now over at Mrs Q, so it was interesting to see whether the food was still up to the reputed high standard.
We started off with the Satay, which comes with 6 skewers; 3 chicken, and 3 pork and veal. A little pedestrian I know, but very well executed. Both meats were juicy and succulent with lovely smokey flavours. The satay sauce was thick and creamy, and the flavours were just right. The chicken was slightly better than the other, but only just.
The Bug Tail was kind of disappointing as there was one small bug tail sliced in half in the entire dish. At $16.50 a serve, you kind of expect a bit more. The dish was cooked with a seafood spice paste which did pack some heat. Pieces of spring onion and baby corn were thrown into the mix which really did soak up the flavoursome juices.
For the mains, we had the F-Duck. Portion size, you get half a duck which is cut in half. It’s not a small duck by any means so you get your money’s worth. The duck is twice cooked so the skin is really crispy, however on the downside, the meat was dry. The leafy spinach was soft and delicate, while the tamarind paste spread over the plate could have been a bit more generous.
The Beef Cheeks was the star of the evening and one of the best I’ve had. A generous serving cooked in a coconut milk, chilli and turmeric sauce. The meat is tender, succulent and gelatinous, and simply falls apart. The dish is sweet and reminds me of a Beef Cheek Massaman Curry I had at Soi 38. A must have dish!
The experience as a whole at Fish Head was quite good. The staff were friendly and attentive, and the service was fairly efficient. Meals came out promptly, plates were cleared as we finished and drinks were refilled throughout the night. Apart from the Bug Tails, I thought the dishes were good value for money; entrees are around $13, mains $25 and dessert $11. Better value for money is had if you dine here in groups of 4 or more and get one of their banquet options.
I’d definitely come back to try some of their other dishes.
WHERE: 270 Morphett St, Adelaide