Eater | Dani Valent

Eater

We’ve all got to eat so it might as well be good! I’ve been a restaurant critic for almost 20 years, and have been writing a weekly restaurant column in Melbourne’s Sunday Age since 2006.

My approach is to always take a restaurant on its own terms: there’s no point slamming a burger joint because it doesn’t have white tablecloths. I try to be constructive in my criticism and I’ve always got the diner in mind: there are many places you could choose to go. Why should it be here?

 

Bar Carolina

Let's start with the salt dispensers, because they say as much about Bar Carolina as the silky pappardelle tangled with rabbit ragu, the gay divorcees gossiping over prosecco, even the designer dogs in the rear outdoor nook helping their owners decide between wood-roasted eye fillet and lamb rump with sweetbreads.

Brae

Brae has three Good Food Guide hats. It was named 44th in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Its owner Dan Hunter could fill a barn with ‘chef of the year’ awards. So, you would expect this five-year-old country restaurant, two hours west of Melbourne, to be very, very good. What you might not anticipate is how great it makes you feel.

© Dani Valent 2018