Good Eats

Farmer’s Daughters @ Melbourne

It’s very rare that I used the bread as the blog’s focus photo. But it was the soda bread that I tried at this place that left the most impression.

Open Kitchen on the ground floor Deli

The Farmer’s Daughters in Melbourne CBD is made up of three parts – the Deli on the ground floor, the Restaurant on the first, and the Rooftop which is a bar overlooking the CBD. Produce from Gippsland is featured in this farm-to-table eatery. Open kitchen serves a choice of la carte dishes or a chef’s selection menu, across lunch and dinner, from Tuesday to Saturday. Today, we tried the Chef’s Selection Menu.

Chef’s Selectioon menu (Aug 2022)

The menu is specially curated on a changing basis by Executive Chef Alejandro Saravia to reflect the seasons. It showcases the best and freshest seasonal ingredients from across Gippsland in a range of dishes designed to share.  

Eaglehawk Creek leg ham, green olive, mustard leaf, radish

Eaglehawk Creek leg ham, green olive, mustard leaf, radish

Eaglehawk Creek Farm Produce is a paddock to plate farm that specialises in organic free range pork and beef. The breed of pigs they have been farming are Landrace and Large Whites, with long bodies they are perfect for loin bacon. You can imagine how good and flavoursome these leg hams were.

Farm style soda bread, Caldermeade Farm cultured butter

Farm style soda bread, Caldermeade Farm cultured butter

Settled in 1875, Caldermeade was originally one of the region’s premier beef cattle properties. Today it is a modern, fully operational commercial dairy farm focused on educating and entertaining its visitors. The cultured butter was so rich and creamy, it went perfectly well with soda bread. And the bread was solid, almost pound cake like. I could only manage half a slice.

O’Connor beef butchers cut, braised kale, fried artichoke, red cabbage

O’Connor beef butchers cut, braised kale, fried artichoke, red cabbage

O’Connor Beef produce some of Australia’s best grass fed Angus and Hereford cattle breeds, flourishing in the crisp fresh air, pristine water and nutrient rich Gippsland pastures. The cattle are free of hormones and antibiotics. Today’s cut was the premium grass-fed eye fillet.

braised kale, fried artichoke, red cabbage

But the excellent beef was overshadowed by the braised kale and fried artichoke with red cabbage slaw. They were not stingy on the serving of the vegetable, all cooked to perfection.

Bulmer Farms salad, caper vinaigrette

Bulmer Farms salad, caper vinaigrette

One of Australia’s leading salad producers, the Bulmer family have been growing vegetables for thirty years and farming the land for over sixty. The salad highlighted the best of their produce – lettuce, baby broccoli, leafy brassicas, beet/chard, rocket, spinach and baby kale in a caper vinaigrette dressing.

Seasonal Jones potato fries, dill mayo

Seasonal Jones potato fries, dill mayo

Delicious, nutrition-dense potatoes grown on the Jones’ family farm in West Gippsland made into the fries and served with dill infused mayonnaise.

Tambo Valley honey panna cotta, hazelnut, golden raisin

Tambo Valley honey panna cotta, hazelnut, golden raisin

Tambo Valley Honey is 100% Australian honey 🍯 🐝 that offers a raw and unfiltered taste of country East Gippsland Victoria. Drizzled on a delicious panna cotta and topped with hazelnut and golden raisins. A sweet ending to a wonderful lunch.

Afterthoughts

Melbourne continues to surprise me with good eats every time I come to this city. The restaurants get better and better, as the produce from the state of Victoria is excellent. Like many COVID-era restaurants, the story has been one of fits and starts, lockdowns and re-openings, but at this point Farmer’s Daughters is firing on all cylinders. 

And the food is rooted in place, not just in terms of the ingredients, but also the soul of Gippsland – its heartiness, its straightforward goodness. Alejandro’s passionate vision for the region, combined with his wealth of experience, means Farmer’s Daughters is highly regarded by diners and the dining industry alike. Highly recommended.

Farmer’s Daughters
95 Exhibition Street, 80 Collins Precinct, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia
Tel : +61 3 9116 8682

Visited in Aug 2022

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