Tin Hill Social: Dreamboat of culinary expectations

After looking through the menu at Tin Hill Social, you'll immediately start to formulate ways to squeeze in more nosh in your tummy. The mesmeric carte du jour heralding several choices of  meat cuts presented in abstract ways such as the hay smoked pork ribs and sous vide octopus leg served with romesco sauce and hazelnuts. Making a choice, may just be the toughest part yet; the resistance to wipe out all of the wasabi fries in the mess tin coming in a close second.

My previous run in with Chef Michael Lewis, who now runs a tight ship in the spacious kitchens of Tin Hill Social was (unfortunately) at Spathe Public House where he worked a similar style of magic into the jaded mammoth sized sharing plates concept in that joint. His clean approach to food infiltrating its way into the nooks and crevices of the establishment's offerings, fortunate for them too at that juncture since it was their only saving grace - you can read more about my experience at Spathe here. Now, liberated and highly inspired, Chef Michael takes over the reigns of Tin Hill Social, putting Australian modern cuisine back on the map, accompanied by a good head of quiet sensibilities.

My advise would be to head down for dinner, as that is when most of the new dishes have wounded up being served. For starters, the Hay Smoked Quail Eggs are a riveting way to be introduced to the chef's love for smoking (things, not cigarettes in between kitchen breaks.. duh), the porcelain white hide of the quail eggs permeated with the sweet smell of sun-scorched meadows, the burst of runny yolk fuelling these barnyard dreams.

The next act unravels with the Australian Darling Downs BMS* 6-7 Wagyu Tartare ($26.50) - shaved Italian Black truffle over carefully minced wagyu, chunks of savoury hard-ripened gran padano cheese adding a muted savouriness, while the quail yoke contributes a crown of luxury to this retro dish. Some may find the mince a bit on the coarse side, but the chef explains that with such an excellent cut of meat, it would be a pity not to taste it in larger chunks. I can't agree more.. scraping aggressively, crostini against bone marrow long after the prized commodities have disappeared.

The server ducked in with the Tin Hill Darling Downs BMS* 4+ Wagyu Brisket Burger ($28.50), silently stirring in delight at my prevalent carnivorous intentions. One bite, and faith in burger prospects are restored. My tongue said it was my destiny, the fulfilment of my earthly desires, or at least all the ones that can conceivably be fulfilled by a burger. Chomping down on 12-hour smoked brisket, the marbled white fats retaining a subtle hay and hickory flavor, these worked perfectly with the cabbage slaw, nodules of delightfully stinky confit garlic squished between pillowy buns. For a few minutes, the partner from across the table went away, and we were alone, the brisket burger and I, floating together in a void somewhere. 

The exhilaration continues with the Australian Lamb Rack Rendang ($41) where we hearsay one of the chefs in the kitchen has contributed a family recipe to the frame of the dish. Sous vide and served at medium doneness, the lamb rack coated in spicy rendang sauce was absolutely smashing. Pickled cauliflower, resembling achar and puffed wild rice adding to the pageantry of the dish. By the time I bit into the tender, melt-in-your-mouth lamb chased with a bouquet of robust Asian spices, I was convinced that this was one of the most exciting meals I'd had this year.

Tin Hill Social
100 Turf Club Road
t: 6466 0966

Operating Hours: 
Tues - Fri: 10am - 12am
Sat - Sun: 10am -12am
Mon: Closed

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