MELBOURNE | It’s been far to long since I’ve ventured into Richmond for a feed and a drink, and just as long since I’ve last eaten Charley Snadden-Wilson’s food. With the new venue that Charlie has opened up with Lyndon Kubis, Clover, finally up and running after several delays outside of the duo’s control, of course I had to get myself over there to check it out.
Inspired by the wine caves of Paris, Clover is a wine bar in the mould that’s all the buzz at the moment. Interesting wines, and epic food that’s as much of a part of the venue as the drinks list.
Charlie’s made a name for himself cooking at several top venues around town over the past decade – Etta, Town Mouse, Embla, and The Moon to name a few. The food coming out of the kitchen at Clover is a continuation of this. Delicious things with a focus on ingredients cooked over fire. To be specific, a huge custom built Brick Chef oven and grill. Do nab a seat at the VERY open kitchen.
Local, seasonal produce, a minimal waste philosophy, you get the drill. It’s all very now and it’s all very good. Honey bread served in melted butter flecked with Provence herbs (i.e. fancy garlic bread) sets the scene for what’s to come. Make sure to save some bread for mopping up the sauces from the other dishes.
A few of the highlights include wonderfully charred leeks, soft and topped with a whey creme; fruits de mer – a selection of seafood that’s best at the market on a given day; and smoked tri tip, thinly sliced with fennel and thousand island dressing atop a toasted slice of that bread.
Dessert is something you won’t want to skip. In particular, the surprisingly light rhubarb brown sugar cake, topped with a fluffy coconut merginge-like cream.
For drinks, Lyndon’s list is perhaps what separates Clover from similar venues around town. There are interesting local wines and spirits on the 200 strong bottle list, but it’s mostly interesting stuff from abroad. Exciting things from young winemakers and distillers in places like France and Italy, that you don’t often see in Australia.
Whether popping in for drinks and a snack, of a full blown dinner, Clover is a killer, must try venue.
193 Swan Street
Tue – Wed: 5:00pm to 10:00pm
Thu – Sat: 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Sun: 12:00pm to 5:00pm