A few evenings ago, a friend and I had a solid dinner at Flinders Lane. This modern Australian restaurant draws a heavy influence on southeastern Asian cuisine, especially when reading through the tightly edited menu.
The décor pays homage to the gritty history of Flinders Lane, a former rag-trade district in Melbourne, with concrete walls and floors, bare bulbs suspended from skinny metal cages and a mural of adjacent Hosier Lane in its neon-graffiti glory.
We started off with a pristine plate of tuna sashimi, touched with a robust olive oil, salty, briny roe and the crunchy curls of taro chips.
The sweet, seared diver scallops sitting on a bed of chili-cashew relish was mildly spicy but has depth from the various peppers used in this sauce. The delicately grassy hijiki was delightful to eat with the scallops. The bitter arugula added a breath of freshness to the dish.
The salt and pepper squid salad was delicious. The tender rings of squid with the segments of juicy, bitter-sweet grapefruit and herbaceous mix of red onions and cilantro and peanuts for crunch. It’s balanced salad that I don’t mind having a large bowl and have it for the entire evening.
To finish our evening was the coconut curry laksa with the addition of poached chicken. While you’d normally associate laksa outside of Australia, the Aussies do have this creamy bowl of curried noodles soup for after a long night out. Their take is very good and incredibly rich from the coconut milk. It’s sweet and quite likable, although it plays down the heat and the funk and it’s loaded with chicken and wide rice noodles.[alpine-phototile-for-flickr src=”set” uid=”26389565@N00″ sid=”72157668881719429″ imgl=”flickr” shuffle=”1″ style=”gallery” row=”4″ grwidth=”1200″ grheight=”800″ size=”640″ num=”30″ shadow=”1″ border=”1″ align=”center” max=”100″]
162 Avenue A
New York, NY 10009