Not having been in and around Braddon for 18 months or so I was very, and pleasantly, surprised last week by the number of restaurants and bars that have sprung up, especially in Lonsdale Street. With a few hours to spare until my flight home on Saturday afternoon I had a wander around and visited three places – one an old acquaintance but which had moved to new digs, and two new spots.
One of the new places was Bent Spoke in Mort Street, a brewery and pub, and a very impressive looking set up. Inside behind the bar are the stainless steel tanks brewing away, out on the pavement tables, benches under shade.
The menu is their take on classic pub grub – burgers, wings, steak sandwiches, mussels, fish – and from this, feeling like a snack rather than a full meal I went for Smoked Mac and Cheese Balls. Three crumbed balls, a little larger than a golf ball, were served up on a bed of roasted corn and chopped chilli, along with a mild chilli jam for dipping.
The outside was firm and crisp, the filling nicely gooey and cheesy, with a distinct smoked flavour and aroma. The pasta was well cooked, not gluggy, and all in all they proved to be pretty good beer snacks.
As to the beer, well there is a large range – but luckily they serve up samplers of four 200 ml glasses of your choice in an interesting industrial styled serving tray – all metal and robust.
Farrer’s Wheat named from wheat pioneer, William Farrer who, if I recall correctly from school days, developed rust free wheat, is a cloudy style wheat ale. It has a pleasant sweet flavour, with a hint of spice and citrus and was served with a slice of orange to enhance the palate.
Mort’s Gold is a pilsner style, quite hoppy on the nose and palate, dry and crisp. Named it says for Thomas Mort, founder of Australia’s first gold mining company.
Pedal Pale Ale is a light beer (2.9%) and again has a sweet somewhat nutty taste.
Finally, Dick Tracy is a fruity brown ale in the Belgian style, quite hoppy and with a yeasty aroma and was my pick of the four I tried.
The owners of Bent Spoke have obviously put a lot of effort into the bar, it looks good, and the beers are different and should prove very popular over the coming warmer months. It looks to have a bright future.