It’s not like us to squeal on the latest hot to trotter trend but we have found a sty-lish new kind of meet market which is the ultimate pig-me-up.
Red Lantern’s Pauline Nguyen and Mark Jensen take us to the streets of Vietnam then over to the USA to experience Portland’s smoky BBQ scene. It’s all mashed up with crafty beer love thanks to Mick Bain’s influence (Albert Hotel Group.) Red Lantern has been officially Pork’d.
A little respect for the pork please. Sustainable, ethical pork is what they love and it shows in every cut, dish and combination. Whole pigs are broken down so everything is used. Right now the free range pigs are from the Evans family farm in Limerick but rumour has it that Mark’s been checking out a farm in Orange where an entrepreneurial 8-year-old has been working with his dad to raise free range piggies.
It’s a four step process to pork heaven. Grab a table, get a craft beer, peruse the menu then crash the kitchen. Go the ‘Pigsy plate’ for a bit of everything; master-stock pork belly with cider, chilli smoked bacon, lager-infused smoked pork hock, cheese Kransky and chefs pick of the day (we had Mark’s chestnut & cider sausages) but it could be pulled pork brined in Feral Hop Hog beer roasted for eight hours or who knows? Our vote is to go the whole hog and order the entire hock. Hoisin baby back ribs were sweet ‘n’ smoky in all the right places but the Vietnamese roll of the day was a cracker bursting with fiery pork belly attitude.
Those on a liquid diet will go home happy. To prove that can’s aren’t just for your bogan uncle choose from a selection of ‘Cans of craft’ in addition to taps ranging from The Rocks to WA’s Feral Brewery and Tassie’s organic William Smith Cider.
So join the Pork Stars, get some pork on your fork, hoover up a hog and wash it all down with some smooth ale amber oink-ment.
545 Crown St, Surry Hills NSW 2010
Mon-Thurs. 5-11pm; Fri.-Sat 12pm-11pm; Sun 12pm-9pm