I haven’t been very well recently, but don’t worry that’s a whole other story I won’t bore you with, annoyingly what it does mean though is that I have to be even more careful with what I eat, making dinner dating slightly hard.
Trying to find a restaurant that will be a safe choice is a bit of a mission, Jonny being stubborn (*sweet) refuses to pick somewhere he’d like to go because apparently that’s not sensible, bless him. Queue a hasty last minute google to find somewhere we hadn’t yet been and there it was, I’m annoyed I hadn’t thought of it immediately, Smith & Daughters. This incredible looking vegan eatery that I have been wanting to try for weeks.
So we wrapped ourselves up in more layers than style because now the lovely Melbourne is creeping so quickly into winter you’d be mistaken in thinking we were back in the tropics of London. That wind is brutal. But Smith&Daughters definitely eased my winter mood. As soon as you walk in the vibe here is relaxed and easy going. I loved all the décor and the quirky little shrines and candles everywhere. But apparently this isn’t a look I’m allowed to recreate at home according to Jonny. Killjoy.
When I go somewhere like this, where it’s almost perfectly catered for me and I don’t have one measly option that was thrown in as an afterthought so a place can call itself vegetarian/gluten free friendly, it throws me off completely. I am not used to all this choice. So it normally takes me a painful amount of time to decide which dish to get, nothing that a few entrees of warm olives and Queso dip wouldn’t solve whilst poor Jonny waits. What is it with Australia and warming olives? And why hasn’t it spread to England. I love it. I feel ashamed now that I used to eat my olives all boring and cold. But the Queso dip…O sweet jesus stuck to the shrine on the wall, my god it was good. And cashew cheese as well. Clearly proving that vegan dishes are not tasteless and boring. This was yummy and a really decent sized portion. I got too excited at the cheese and salsa and didn’t even realise there was a whole other layer of black bean underneath. Consider me content.
Having finally made a decision, what felt like a few weeks later, we settled on a creamy mushroom dish with paprika, a chickpea and artichoke salad to share and so Jonny didn’t feel to vegan, he got some Garlic Prawns, which smelted insane. Anything that is drowning in garlic has to be a winner and he said through mouthfuls that it tasted as good as it smelt. Such a decent sized portion, embarrassingly he left two and I had to role him home. Definitely get the salad if you visit here, I promise you it was amazing. Two different types of artichoke, capers and roasted chickpeas. I’m going to try and recreate something similar soon and probably live off it for months to come.
Just in case we had any doubt that we were full we finished our feast with a raw-chocolate tart, solely because I wanted to try the avocado ice cream it came with and they wouldn’t sell it separate. Let’s be honest if you go here and still have room for a pudding, I’m disappointed. To be honest just swerve it altogether and not because there’s anything wrong but just there’s so much more you want to devote attention too.
If you’re in Melbourne regardless of whether you are veggie, vegan or a diehard carnivore just give this place a go. It’s quirky, I want their wall art in my lounge, and it’s relaxed, the type of place you will sit for hours with a group of friends but more importantly it’s so god damn tasty. Go on. Try it.
Find Smith & Daughters here –
175 Brunswick Street,