Dining reviewer WENDY JOHNSON savours some Peruvian flavours down by the lake.
ONE thing is for sure. The Jetty Canberra, which opened on New Year’s Eve at Queen Elizabeth Terrace, has pretty speckie views.
It’s on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin – you couldn’t get any closer to the water if you tried – with expansive scenery.
The Dock (Kingston Foreshore) runs the overall operation, which offers food, drink, live entertainment and a great atmosphere. A massive tent structure provides shade and wooden picnic tables are available in the sun.
On site, The Jetty Kiosk (café) serves coffee and food, the Bentspoke Beer Garden pours beer on tap, creates cocktails and serves wine, and Mr Papa’s van smashes out sexy Peruvian street food.
The café is open from 7am, seven days. Lined up in the large display cabinet are ciabattas ($14), muffins, cakes and pastries.
The ciabatta options on our visit were smoked ham, cheese and tomato relish as well as a sweet potato, caramelised onion, roast pepper, cheese and pesto. They’re created by the folks behind the gorgeous Three Mills Bakery.
Also on the menu is the “Jetty Picnic Box”, “Guac Box”, “Salty Snack Box” and sausage rolls. No doubt the ice cream cones are popular.
We asked what was in the suite of boxes but were told it didn’t matter ‘cause they were all sold out. That took care of that, so we headed to Mr Papa’s, where it was service with a smile.
Mr Papa’s friendly staff warned there was a bit of a wait, which we didn’t mind – especially given the heads-up and we weren’t surprised given it was a glorious weekend with loads of people about.
And it was well worth that wait.
The mini empanadas ($7.50) got the tastebuds dancing. They were crispy on the outside and packed with warm, spicy Peruvian flavours. The two of us shared the dish, dipping the empanadas into a tasty street sauce with secret ingredients.
Next up were burgers ($16), which Mr Papa’s kindly cut in half so we could each try each kind. The P.F.C. (Peruvian fried chicken) was super scrumptious. The chicken was thick, but moist, and the coating packed a punch with spices. Another burger masterpiece was the Pan Con Chorizo. The artisan-smoked chorizo was heavenly and we adored the street chimichurri and fun papitas. The chips were piping hot and perfectly seasoned ($5).
On the drink side, cocktails ($15 to $16) included a Four Pillars Shiraz Gin Spritz. Wines ($10 to $15) included a Whitton Rose, Twill & Daisy Sauvignon Blanc, Nick O’Leary Riesling, Chain of Ponds Shiraz and Bourke Street Pinot Noir. BentSpoke’s beers were being poured.
The Jetty Canberra has live entertainment Thursday to Sunday.
Who can be trusted?
In a world of spin and confusion, there’s never been a more important time to support independent journalism in Canberra.
If you trust our work online and want to enforce the power of independent voices, I invite you to make a small contribution.
Every dollar of support is invested back into our journalism to help keep citynews.com.au strong and free.
Ian Meikle, editor