There will be a next time and more suckling pig!
A few weeks ago Bron suggested we go to Black Fire Restaurant after she dined there with a friend. She sent me a photograph of part of the menu and I immediately got excited when I saw the words “whole roasted animals…” Bron added that she thought this would be a place I’d like to visit.
Our reservation was for 7 pm on a Wednesday evening. We arrived a little early and were shown our table. Fortunately because we were early we were ushered to a pretty good table midway along the main wall of the restaurant. The other table for two we were initially shown was in the middle of the restaurant floor and close to the access gate for the bar. Where we were seated had much less people traffic. Even though the surfaces were all hard it wasn’t a noisy environment. I could hear everything Bron said which isn’t always the case when we dine out.
Our initial experience with the wait staff was really good and remained like that throughout the evening. We had a few questions about the menu during the evening and the wait staff were only too happy to help answer questions about the menu and wines.
I think my only complaint about the restaurant is the size of the print on the menu. While the lighting in the restaurant was good (not too dark and not bright…you know what I mean, enough light for shooting photographs without excessive grain), the background of the menu was a grey-brown and the font was small and black, even with my reading glasses I had trouble.
The menu suits diners who want to share and the meal portions are a good size. They certainly satisfied both of us.
For an entrée Bron chose the baby octopus and I chose the ocean trout with finger limes. I’ve always wanted to try finger limes.
Both these dishes were delicious. Every portion of them left a great taste sensation. I would definitely be happy to eat these again.
For our main meals Bron chose the Wagyu skirt steak (marble score 7+) with a witlof salad. I chose the suckling pig with an apple sauce and Jerusalem artichokes.
As both meals were brought out we marvelled at the generous size of each dish. The suckling pig was a little deceiving. The cut of meat looked like the forequarter ribs and the meat was presented crackling side up. There was nothing under the ribs. That said, the amount of crackling, muscle, fat and intercostal meat was still pretty generous. Bron’s Wagyu was meant to be about 250 g but it could have been larger. It was a large piece of skirt steak and it was cooked perfectly. The meat was falling apart. The taste was amazing. That said, I think we both agreed that the suckling pig was the dish of the night.
While we were pondering the possibility of dessert the table next to ours had a whole suckling pig brought out. This pig looked magnificent. Bron has since told me that she thought it was from that point on that my demeanor became more excited. I already thought I was pretty excited given I was enjoying my own portion of suckling pig. I didn’t sense in myself any change but it was obvious enough for Bron to notice. Given one of the blokes at that table offered me some of the pig to eat, I must have been overtly excited. Bron thought my excitement at the neighbouring table’s meal was adequately demonstrated by me getting my Sony α7S camera out and photographing THEIR dinner!
I was curious to know if the pig’s brain remained In Situ during the cooking. Bron thought it may have been removed, perhaps via the oral cavity. Given the head was still attached, I thought it would still be in there. I recall that the ancient Egyptians used to fracture the ethmoid plate and extract brains through the nose to preserve mummies, but this pig wasn’t being embalmed, it was being cooked and extracting the brain would take time. Bron was appalled when I asked one of the wait staff if the brain remained in the cranium during the cooking. She didn’t know but went and asked the chef and he confirmed that the brain is In Situ. As it turns out for about $200 you can get a pig or a lamb with sides and salads and you need at least eight people. I reckon I need to find more friends in Canberra 🙂
I was mesmerised watching the chef break down the pig and serve it to the guests at that table. What I really wanted to do is reach over and break off the pig’s ears and eat them. The crackling looked sublime.
For dessert Bron chose the chocolate indulgence which consisted of a chocolate mousse and spicy fennel with a warm butter toasted almond meal tart. I chose the Peach Melba and panna cotta. It was delicious. It had a lovely crunchy praline on the Peach Melba.
I would highly recommend Black Fire Restaurant and am happy to rate it 4.5 out of 5 colonies. “Fantastic. I’ll be back.”
If you have any comments or questions please send me a comment in the space below.
I’ve also written some thoughts on the photography in this post.