THE GLASS HOUSE, Hobart
I flew back to my birth-city Hobart to celebrate my dad’s birthday on the weekend. It was an evening celebration so there was time to fit in a lunch somewhere new. Always a food-opportunist (umm, I think you’ve probably already worked that out), I gathered some good friends and made a booking at The Glass House, “The place at the end of the pier”. I’d heard about this place because Ikuei Arakane (otherwise known as Kinsan), the executive chef, was one of the chefs at a couple of charity/Ironchef dinners that I went to in Adelaide last year.
The building itself is at the end of Brooke Street Pier – an impressive new glass ‘floating’ structure. The Glass House is at the back of the building, with extensive water views. It’s stylish and contemporary, and it’s great to see a place like this in Hobart. The owners are responsible for the Islington Hotel, Tasmania’s five star luxury hotel. Above The Glass House you’ll find Aloft restaurant which I’m definitely going to next visit – another foodie friend has told me it’s a must.
Chef Kinsan was the founding chef of the restaurant Taxi in Melbourne and at The Glass House he’s developed a Tasmanian menu that’s Japanese-inspired and changes with the seasons. Also in the kitchen doing much of the cheffing is DC Lim. Originally from Korea, DC has worked at MONA, Jean Pascal Patisserie and the Beltana. The focus is on local produce, supporting local producers and farmers. The cocktail list is excellent and I started with a ‘Truffle Daisy’. I saw the magic word ‘truffle’ and went straight for it – made from Don Julio Blanco tequila, grand marnier, lime and Tasmanian truffle oil.
I hadn’t heard any feedback about the food here and wasn’t really sure what to expect but when I saw what was on offer, I have to say, I was pretty excited. The menu displayed all of the right words… ocean trout, pork belly, duck leg, abalone, wakame, tamarind, sesame, miso, mango, lamb belly, just to name a few! This is my kind of food! It’s all small plates designed to share with prices between $10 – $26. There were six of us so we picked a few things and got a couple of serves of each. Oysters natural (Mmmm, oysters!), Kingfish sashimi (the fish of the day), Tempura prawn and pork belly, Five spiced duck leg, Korean fried chicken, Pork belly bao, and Okonomiyaki. We enjoyed it all. My favourite, I think, was the pork belly bao. No, hang on, it was the duck leg. Actually, no it wasn’t, I think it was the fried chicken… hmmm… I’ll have to get back to you on that.
As well as serving good cocktails, they also offer some good wines and we decided to order our wines by the glass as we all wanted different varietals. For those of you who appreciate a fine spirit, they offer a ‘Bottle Keep Menu’ option whereby you can buy a bottle of exclusive spirits from their list and have it kept in a secure cabinet for you to enjoy on subsequent visits.
The Glass House is all about sharing tasty food, cocktails and good wine in a refined setting on the water. The food was delicious and we had faultless service from our waiter Ryo. It’s classy and fun and a great place to catch up. This place is good for locals, tourists and for Hobart.