When? - 9th of December, 2010
Where? - 740 Mt. Alexander Rd. Moonee Ponds
Price? - $12 ‘Parma n Pot’ Thursdays
Barry? - No
Website? - http://www.junctiontabaret.com.au/
Reviewers - Adam, Cale, Dale, Lee, Ness, Nikki, Pat, Sara, Shane, Stefo, Tanya[/info]
Oh no! another late update - castrate me and serve the remains to the dogs … I apologise, but had an absolutely massive weekend and didn’t have a chance to pump out the review. But I’m here now! so lets do this.
We had heard that the Junction did a great pot n’ parma special, and as it is literally just down the road from where the world’s best parma used to reside we figured it was well worth a shot.
We rocked up at the Junction and took our seats - the pub has been beautifully renovated (seemingly) very recently, with a spacious TAB up one end, large pokies room down the other and a thin bistro connecting the two - kind of imagine a ‘shake weight’ with the bistro on the grip, and without the obvious sexual innuendo
With the bistro being so long and thin it seemed a little cramped with not a lot of room for tables - but this may have been because our group of 11 reviewers took up a massive section of the room, but just to be safe if you plan to eat at the Junction I would advise making a booking.
Once the whole crew arrived we went to the bar to place our orders - once we got there we were presented with our ‘parma’s of the world’ menu and had to make a choice
Some interesting choices! I saw a Hawaiian go past and it looked pretty tasty - mayo would definitely be an interesting addition to a parma but unfortunately I’m not big on pineapple. Mexican is always a winner and the Asian parma just sounds weird, after a moment of consideration I decided to play it safe and go with the standard ‘Junction Parmy’ someone needs to tell the writers of this menu that we are in Victoria, not NSW or SA, down here its ParmA, not ParmY.
We ordered, gathered our included pots and headed into the pokies area, put on a ‘club keno’ ticket and used that to pass the time a little until the parmas arrived.
First of all, lets discuss a phenomenon that I haven’t mentioned before. We all know about nude schnitzel, the part of the chicken where no cheese, napoli or ham is sitting leaving exposed chicken schnitzel. The Junction’s parma wouldn’t have had any problems with nude schnitz if it weren’t for the unfortunate effect of what I have dubbed ‘slippery cheese’.
Slippery cheese occurs when a parma is made, stacked on an angle on top of the chips, then let sit under the heat lamps for a few minutes, the cheese gets the full force of the heat lamps and melts again, the napoli under the cheese acts as a lubricant and as the parma is on an angle gravity does the rest. The cheese slides away and what was once a decently dressed piece of schnitzel slowly reveals its shameful nudity, much like Tara Reid on a red carpet
Slippery cheese can easily be avoided in one of two ways - either don’t stack your parma on top of your chips or don’t let the parma sit under the heat lamps! If you are producing quality parmas neither of these would be an issue, but its definitely something to keep an eye out for.
Wow, massive digression.
Another clue that our parma had been victim of heat lamps was that the schnitzel itself wasn’t hot - I am unsure whether this was true of the other end of the table (who got their parmas last) but the first few that arrived came out lukewarm, not inedibly so, but a few more notches on the thermometer would have made a better parma. The schnitzel was small-ish in circumference but thick enough to be enjoyed. There was an abundance of napoli and cheese on the areas that weren’t victims of slippery cheese, but it seemed to harden rather quickly as it got out into the open air, leaving it a bit rubbery by the end of the meal. The ham was there, but not very noticeable, which can be either a good or bad thing depending on your opinion of ham.
The chips were fairly decent, a sprinking of chicken salt gave them a unique taste to what we have tried before - I would comment on the size if their serving but reviewer Pat seagull’ed a lot of them away before I got a chance to take note of the serving size (bastard).
The salad was poor, some wilted lettuce, a wedge of tomato and clumps of onion cut way too thick (and I’m normally pro-onion!) soaked in a very bitter white wine vinegar the salad was not a good accompaniment to the meal.
Opinion was varied on this parma, some rated it well and others rated it poorly - the opinion of the parma definitely seemed to change as we moved down the table so I can only attribute it to the parmas down our end coming out cold and the other end getting the piping hot fresh ones. If dining at the Junction’s ‘Parmas of the world’ night I would suggest getting one of the novelty parmas available to get full value out of your meal, as the plain parma was just that - plain. The price is perfect and for a $12 parma with a free pot I can’t complain too much, but when compared to last weeks attempt at The Albion Hotel ($13 with a pot and pretty darn amazing) it just didn’t quite cut it.
After our meal we headed into the pokies area to play the candy machine in there, pumped in $15 and took home a bag full of candy bars for desert, definite win there.
Parma - 5.5
Chips - 6.2
Salad - 4.3
Value - 7.3
Total - 5.75
The search continues…