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This Week In Food: A Carlton North gem — and then Kate gets VERY boozy!

Ross and Kate
Article image for This Week In Food: A Carlton North gem — and then Kate gets VERY boozy!

By Kate Stevenson


Remember that staycation I had in Carlton? Well, one of the places I was dying to check out while I was there was Henry Sugar, a fabulous local neighbourhood wine bar & restaurant in Carlton North. One of those gems where the owners are on hand – Dan running the floor and Mike in the kitchen, they promise Spanish-inspired Italian dishes, and offer up a brilliant value seven-course tasting menu for just $75. What did we eat? Well, roasted crickets for a start. But fun smaller dishes like saltbush & vinegar tempura-beetroot leaves (in their own foil crisp packet), beetroot morcilla with goats curd and honey (no pigs harmed in the making of that one; and later, tremendous braised lamb shoulder with quince and prune. I really was blown away by this one, from the intimate and warm atmosphere, to the impeccable service, generosity of serves and quality of cooking. Henry Sugar deserves a look.

Now … it all gets a bit boozy!


As we know, Fitzroy’s Cutler and Co celebrates 10 very successful years in operation this year. They’ve been celebrating with chef and alumni-filled dinners and special menus, and for this month, they’ve unveiled a barrel of Starward Whisky created especially for the big milestone. And so, we are invited to enjoy whisky-fuelled winter nights by trying this unique expression of Australian single malt whisky in their front bar by the nip, in a cocktail and paired with a dish available exclusively on the Cutler & Co. Bar menu.


A little late notice … but TOMORROW, Sunday, 7 July, that fabulous gastropub The Lincoln is teaming up with Four Pillars Gin to put on an all-day celebration of all things gin, pig, and gin pig. Oh my! Opening at 10am, there’ll be ‘Bacon Butties’ for brunch, with  gin botanical cured bacon roll, smoked egg and brown sauce for $12;  perfect with the gin version of  a Bloody Mary, the ‘Spiced Snapper’. Later, head chef Howard Stamp, along with Four Pillars Creative Director Matt Wilkinson, have worked on a menu utilising classic Lincoln dishes & Four Pillars ‘made from gin’ products – think gin-cured salmon on mini crumpets, braised pork croquettes, and gin pig sausage rolls.


If you love your pinot noir, and of course your food, you might be interested in the next wine dinner at city eatery Saxe. Chef & owner Joe Grbac is hosting winemaker Allan Nalder from the Yarra Valley’s Helen’s Hill for a special pinot dinner on Saturday July 27. He’ll serve up a a five-course menu matched perfectly to Allan’s wines, think Dry Aged Duck Breast, Jacks Creek Wagyu, cultivated mushrooms and heirloom beetroot from the Yarra Valley itself; and Allan will be on hand to talk you through the wine. It’ll set you back $130 per head, which is pretty good value. To book, email


Looking for a way to warm up over winter? Well, the Winter Village at Fed Square is offering two warm cocktails thanks to Sipsmiths Gin. Try their take on the classic in the “Hot G&T,” with Sipsmith Gin, tonic syrup and a sugary twist; or maybe the Bee’s Hot Knees – wit gin, tangy lemon juice and sweet honey syrup. Of course, you should probably try the ice skating first, then maybe you can retire to one of the onsite  private igloos with mates (there are eats on offer too). Check it all out –

Ross and Kate