Where? The Doutta Galla Hotel, 339 Racecourse Rd, Flemington
Price? - Menu price $23.90, Wednesday pot & parma deal.
Reviewers – Fridge, Lee, Nikki, Stefo [/info]
When we first started ParmaDaze it took a few weeks for us to find our feet. When we did Mrs. Parmas I hadn't even thought about making it into a website, when we did The Palmerston everyone was too hung over from St. Pats day to even turn up, even The Leveson was a little shaky on its feet - It wasn't until week four, when we did The Doutta Galla Hotel, that I was confident this idea would become a thing.
With fourteen reviewers at the table it remains as one of the biggest turnouts we've had to a parma night. Good times were had, many beers were consumed, we even enjoyed a few post-parma games of pool - It was a great night, however (and I'm not gonna sugarcoat it) the parma sucked. You can read about the original attempt here, but the short version was this - processed, heart shaped schnitzel, nudity that would make your nan blush and processed, rubber cheese. It was cheap and nasty, with an emphasis on the nasty and a few reviewers even stopped at McDonalds on the way home from the parma so they could get some decent food into them.
I had written off The Doot until just recently, when whispers started coming in that they had improved. A Tweet or Facebook post here and there over the course of a few weeks, then last week it snowballed with multiple emails coming in telling us we had to give it another shot. I was torn, we haven't had the best of luck with redo's in the past, but I'm nothing if not a people pleaser, so we loaded up the parma bus and headed over to the Doutta Galla Hotel.
I've always liked the atmosphere of the Doot, probably because it reminds me so much of the late, great Prince of Wales Hotel, but its always had a laid back, inviting vibe that tickles me in all the right places. Couches if you want them, pool tables if you want them, plenty of TV if you want them and tables out the front & down the side street if you feel like a beer in the sun, Things might change a little when it switches into "nighclub mode" but I can't say I've ever had a bad time at the Doot.
I ordered a pint of Carlton on arrival and the bartender gave me a spiel, selling me a pint of Australia Draught instead for $8 a pint - My first time trying the Australia Draught, gotta say it hit the spot nicely.
We took a seat at our table and took a gander at the menu -
Parma sighted. Last time we visited was on a Wednesday night, and on Wednesday's the doot does a $12 parma & pot deal, which still stands after over 4 years without a price rise. We placed our order (with a side of gravy for chip dipping, which there was surprisingly no charge for), and returned to our tables.
Before too long the parmas spilled forth from the kitchen.
Apologies for this photo, the next one is much better, then the cross section is crap again. I blame the lighting and in no way does responsibility fall on my skills as a photographer.
Wow! Compared to last time round this is a massive improvement. Gone is the processed, heart shaped schnitzel and in its place is a massive piece of real chicken breast. Conservatively crumbed and thick as buggery, this parma bottled in the heat, staying steamy till the last bite. Gone is the abundance of nudity that plagued the old parma as it was extremely well topped and cooked to a perfect golden brown.
My one criticism of the schnitzel would be that the chicken was a little dense for my liking, if that makes any sense, but overall this shnitz was an outstanding step up from the last attempt.
See? Told you this was a better photo.
Topping were also solid - Plenty of cheese, a quality mozzarella and tasty blend that carried great flavour. The napoli was tinned, but not noticeably so and much better than the non-existent napoli of last time. The ham was in abundance and very flavoursome, really making its presence in the dish known.
The chips were also pretty good, beer battered and well seasoned. A little overcooked but the side of gravy definitely helped to overlook their faults - I would recommend getting the gravy should you venture to the Doot, it didn't cost us anything to add it so its worth chucking in. It wasn't a small serve of chips, but I did find myself wanting more after I was done.
The salad was okay, but didn't blow me away. Perfectly serviceable garden salad with lettuce, onion, carrot a cherry tomato and creamy dressing. Nothing to write home about, but the ingredients were fresh & well put togehter.
I'd be happy to pay $23.90 again for this parma, and I would be very interested to see if the quality remains the same on $12 parma & pot night - Because if it does this would have to be one of the best value parma nights in the area. If you check it out on a Wednesday let me know (email, twitter, facey, the usual, links are up the top right) if its the same or if they swap it out for the cheap stuff - I would be very disappointed if they do, but if not I'd say cancel your plans for next Wednesday and go check it out.
The Doot doesn't serve up the best parma I've ever had, but it was definitely the biggest improvement we have seen between original review and redo. A fantastic effort and a damn tasty parma - If you're in the area I can recommend stopping in to check it out, you'd be hard pressed to walk away disappointed from this one.
- Free gravy on request
- Amazing improvement from first review
- Parma remained piping hot throughout
- Chicken was quite dense (I dont know how else to explain it, but you'll see!)
- Chips a little overcooked
- "Meh" Salad