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Ela Carte reviews Bax Food Co; Gamon St, Yarraville

Bax Food Co ? 83 Gamon Street Yarraville ? www.baxfoodco.com  

Cheap, tasty and fun ? it’s not a bad combination.

The blokes behind Bax Food Co aren’t new to the Jamaican food scene ? but Roderick, Dalton and Romain have certainly cemented themselves into the fabric of an increasingly food-focused Yarraville.

Bax Food Co is colourful and big ? if you take into account the great outdoor space in the front that I haven’t braved during winter. This place is bound hit its strides in the warmer months, during winter the blast that comes in each time the door is open means you’re unlikely to remove your jacket!

On a good night you’ll get one of the owners looking after you with a cheeky smile and some great tips on the best ‘grub’ to try, on this Saturday night things were a little more lax ? I’ll forgive them this time, because service is usually spot on.

From the ‘Irie grub’ pulled pork sliders were fab ? rib meat is marinated in honey, paprika, salt and secret BBQ sauce overnight, seals and slow cooked in the oven. It comes in a tasty, soft, sweet bun with a tangy slaw.

No doubt the ackee, saltfish and mushroom patties will be an acquired taste, but I love them. Resembling something more akin to an empanada, ackee is basically the national fruit of Jamaica, and ‘ackee and saltfish’ the national dish. The ackee is imported and saut?ed with salt cod, onions, garlic, mushrooms, herbs and spices; enclosed in thick pastry; and accompanied by a sweet apple & tomato relish.

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The ackee, saltfish and murshroom patties.

Smokey BBQ pork ribs were dark and tender, with what was to become a trademark Bax ‘kick’ of spicy heat.

From the mains, Goat Curry has become a staple for us, it’s a perennial winner. Baby goat meat is slow cooked in their signature curry mix with potatoes, and comes with Bax’s take on roti ? a doughy bite with fennel seeds perfect for mopping up the leftover sauce.

Another great crowd pleaser and easy sharer is the jerk platter, a collection of their best spiced, barbecued meats. Disclaimer ? it’s a crowd pleaser if you have can take some heat. There’s no half spicy for these blokes, these dishes have the forementioned kick, so don’t say you weren’t warned. A collection of chicken thighs, Pickapeppa Jerk hot wings, and smokey BBQ pork ribs, plus some tasty corn with coconut and jerk mayo.

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The sliders.

Check out the kids menu too, which offers something other than the run of the mill spag bol or nuggets, while paring down the chilli a bit.

To wash it down it’s hard to go past the famous Red Stripe beer, or these guys have a limited supply of organic wines.

We’ve had some great meals here, even if Saturday was a bit more miss that hit, when it came to service. Bax is a great, laid back space, and great to see some different cuisine being dished out in the suburbs.  

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