Pub Of The Week review: The Settlement Hotel in Cranbourne
PUB: Settlement Hotel
WHERE? cnr. Sth Gippsland Hwy and Camms Rd, Cranbourne
PHONE: 5996 3300
WHEN? 11 March 2016
Second time. My last review was circa 2000 – tempura crocodile was on the menu back then.
Big, sprawling pub. Victorian facade, at the entrance to Cranbourne, that offers full suburban whack of big dining room. There are two dining areas – cafe bar and dining room.
Offers accommodation, function rooms, pokies (no Tab), and drive through bottle shop.
The Settlement is very neatly maintained – inside and out – that sends out an inviting and warm feeling. There isn’t a stand alone front/public bar per se, with the main drinks area forming part of the cafe bar which greets you on entering.
Neat areas to sit and be comfortable on leather lounges. The overall package is very comfortable.
No real shocks for the main food offering, with the dining room – good wicker style chairs, good spacing, light and airy room – offering a few more items than the cafe bar.
Daily specials support the standard menu with an offer of Western Plains Pork chop, quinoa, silverbeet, sweetcorn salad ($27), or Roast Salmon, clam chowder, mussels, pippis, ($28) doing different.
Depending on your point of view, there aren’t too many bargains. But in saying that, this pub endeavours to elevate beyond the standard ‘pub pokie food’. Entrees $14, Mains $28, Dessert $9. Steak sanga $23.50.
Marinated fetta, rocket, balsamic on ciabatta. $16. Clever. Good slab of cheese, sharp and tangy, sat atop a bed of rocket with balsamic in support. Nice share dish, but priced to the mark.
Eye Fillet (200g), chips, salad, pepper sauce. $32.50. Good. Gippsland sources, cooked as ordered, fresh salad, extra tick for a superior pepper sauce.
Crispy pork belly, silverbeet, apple compote $18 (entree size). This thick rectangular slab was well cooked, maybe just a fraction dry but no issue. Good sweet vegetable, big piece of crackling (just a fraction dry again), this was a filling dish at a fair price.
Craft beers mainly but very well presented. Carlton Draught was excellent and glassware well looked after.
Predictable wine list, priced as expected.
SERVICE AND STYLE
Plenty of staff, happy and courteous, on a warm Tuesday afternoon: as you expect from a big suburban pub. Order at counter, meals brought to the table but drinks ordered at the bar.
The Settlement is a good example of what big outer suburban pubs can do. Like its nearby neighbour, Kellys Motor Club, the pub strives to break down preconceived notions about big joints in the burbs and to that end it succeeds.
Pricing is interesting as simply on a dollar spent basis, there aren’t any ‘steals’. That said, enough people were voting with feet and wallets when I attended. Good, safe option.
The Settlement Hotel.