Pub of the Week: Tony Leonard reviews the Saint and Rogue Hotel in Melbourne
Saint and Rogue Hotel
582 Lt Collins Street, Melbourne
When? 30 November 2018
What a fine way to finish the year.
The Saint and Rogue is a small, anonymous pub in the bottom end of Lt Collins, the bit that allows two way traffic between King and Spencer. Nestled away with coverage from a large tree and chairs/tables at the front, it opens up into a delightful, almost members-only club feel.
Double storey, smallish, all the action takes place down stairs (upstairs is the dining room) with wooden paneling on walls, high tables for dining, some leather lounges, and a small bar to the left. A lot is packed in.
Never, though, do you sense being too crowded; the set-out is well planned. To the rear, is a very small beer area (“garden” would be too extravagant) so if you are looking for a gathering of say 20-30, this would fit the bill.
Food is split into bar snacks and restaurant (the former is basically a pared version of the latter). Summarised, it is good pub food, ramped up a little, and to be fair, priced at the mark for pub dining in the CBD.
The Saint and Rogue is a little secret of Melbourne. As the tendency is to go the centre of town and work outward from there, this beauty can be overlooked. It shouldn’t.
With some meter parking out the front to make it a bit easier, trading early to late every day (not Sunday), you may wish to discover this little gem.
The S&R does a roll call of pub favorites.
Entrees of S&P Calamari, Basil and pine nut Arancini, mid teen priced, up to the big Charcuterie ($32) which covers; Rabbit terrine, duck liver pate, saucisson sec, wagyu beef bresaola, prosciutto di Parma, pickled vegetables, apple chutney, lavosh, croutons, chargrilled sourdough. Have a beer and share with friends.
Mains again cover familiar territory. Panko crumbed chicken breast parmigiana ($27) w/ Chips, garden salad, Pan fried Atlantic salmon ($30), warm chat potato salad, asparagus, tomato, avocado & olive salsa, Saint & Rogue house made pot pie ($26).
Entrees $14, Mains $28, Desserts $12.
Peking Duck Spring Roll with hoisin. $8/ea. Good. Long tubes, split to give 2 good sized pieces, hot, tasty, with plenty of duck, popular starter. Reckon the use of the term “Peking” may be overdone here.
220g Chargrilled wagyu beef burger $22 w/Bacon, cheddar, lettuce, tomato, house made pickles, S&R special sauce. Good. Power packed burger, great consistency and depth, good char, support cast fine, not sure that the secret S&R sauce added much.
Spinach, prawn, chorizo linguine (29), white wine, garlic, chilli, olive oil. Good. The right sized serve at lunch, generous supply of ingredients to the al dente pasta, flavours worked well together.
Popular from the tap – Furphy, Fat/Wild yak, Carlton Draught with some different options: Tooboorac Gunslingers, Goose Island IPA. All served brilliantly.
Wine pricing falls with a “CBD” range of $11/52, but I like the fact that most are sourced from smaller providers. If you wish to stump up for a treat, two fine Pinot Noir – Ten x Tractor and Dalrymple are offered.
SERVICE AND STYLE:
Busy late crowd did not affect the offer by staff, who were excellent in getting to you quickly while retaining their love of the job on a very hot day.
At times like this and it can drop off, but the young staff were eager to ensure all was good with the offer.
A fine way to finish the year.
I have gone past the Saint and Rogue a number of times and somehow recall it being named differently, but on entering you felt at ease, and even though it was a short time here; my impression on leaving was you could easily come back for a longer stay. It is that sort of place, in town, without the hustle and bustle.
Melbourne’s CBD has lost too many pubs to redevelopment over the years. There are some beauties that automatically spring to mind that trade as genuine pubs – Sherlock, Mitre, Coppers to name a few.
Add the Saint and Rogue to your list of go-to’s when in town. You won’t be disappointed.
Photo: Saint and Rogue / Facebook