Pub of the Week: Spread Eagle Hotel
PUB: Spread Eagle Hotel
WHERE? 372 Bridge Rd., Richmond
PHONE: 9428 6895
WHEN? 29 April 2016
Third time review. (2002/2009)
What a wonderful old school pub doing modern food in the most hospitable manner possible.
From the half height exterior slate tiles, to the bar in an old style horseshoe style with glassware hanging overhead, the Pub buzzes with a slavish adherence to service. Essentially one room, with tables towards the rear, it is one of the better pubs in a most competitive suburb.
Since a last visit, a wall has been removed and the most simple of smartening up – a decent painting – has taken place. A spoil is the pasta and wine night (tues $20), steak nights, cocktail night, ensures locals love it and those who find it a favourite.
Basically bombproof (no pub is but the Spread is close), this version sits as well, if not better, than previous visits.
The menu is smart. Great smaller plates, good traditional pub grub priced fairly served heartily, the Spread Eagle suits all palates. Corn and cabbage fritters with balsamic glaze and dried bonito (13) is a neat small starter; twice cooked crispy pork belly with cider and maple apple puree, broad bean and chillid, green tea and rhubarb (30) means they have a crack!
Entrees $14, Mains $28. Dessert $13. Char-grilled 200g grass-fed beef burger with mixed leaves, tomato, cornichons, mustard, swiss cheese and beer battered chips is $17.
Four small plates were tried – 3 were fabulous, one was so so;
Pea and Manchego croquettes with romesco sauce. $12. Meh. 4 big balls, romesco fine, but too much pea, not enough cheese, not enough goo,
Prawn and chicken spring rolls with nuoc cham sauce. $13. Great. 4 long tubes, hot, big flavours, top notch dipper,
KFC (Korean fried chicken) with pickled daikon and mixed cabbage slaw. $15. Excellent. Good sized bowl hold 6-7 pieces, hot fleshy chunks, big batter,
MSA Grass -fed beef sliders with chipotle aioli, cos lettuce, cornichons, mustard and tomato $15/3. Very good. Right size, sharp aioli, perfect beer food.
Carlton Draught is the go to here, but a mix of new craft is offered. Well presented and cared for. Wine list offers some different but is mainly the $9/glass//$43/bottle price range (average for pubs). Redbank Pinot Gris was tried and loved.
SERVICE AND STYLE
Owner/operator pub. Love the fact that a manager (Ellie) was on the floor directing the staff through heavy traffic. Table Service for food and drink – Yes.
The Spread Eagle is a popular fixture in Richmond and its status as a good choice pub – all ages – is assured. It is a beauty.