Where? - Crown Casino, 8 Whiteman St. Southbank
Price? - $24
Website? - www.crownmelbourne.com.au/jimbo-and-rex
Reviewers – Fridge, Lee, Nikki, Stefo [/info]
**EDIT** 10/08/15 - In possibly the quickest time from review to close, Jimbo & Rex has now closed its doors permanently, Like the Pub at Crown which once stood in this spot, the Jimbo & Rex parma is no longer available.
You might remember our review from last year where the restaurant "Cotta" at Crown Casino claimed themselves to be "The home of the parma", a ridiculous claim and a bland parma (really only worth it for the "$24 parma & jug" deal, which I don't think is even a thing anymore.
Well, a 60 second walk from Cotta, in the spot where The Pub at Crown used to stand, is Jimbo & Rex. In my daily online searches for parma related happenings I came across a photo of the J&R parma and it actually didn't look half bad - Surprising, as a decent parma within Crown had been notoriously difficult to find. We loaded up the parma bus, grabbed some cash for the blackjack tables and headed to Jimbo & Rex.
Compared to The old Pub at Crown Jimbo & Rex feels a lot smaller and cramped, mostly because the space was split in half to make room for Man Tong Kitchen. There is a small area at the front that has a bit of a pub vibe, but most of the space is taken up by tables and booths for diners.
At 7pm on a Thursday this place was packed - We were lucky to get a table. I'd say you'd be wise to make a booking if you plan to eat here but I'm pretty sure they only accept walk-ins. We took our seats and checked the menu -
Hmm. Sounds alright, lets hope they can deliver on their promises (and a $24 price tag is writing a rather large cheque - lets hope they can cash it).
The range of beers is pretty much what you'd expect from a Crown restaurant
Nothing too adventurous, I went with a pint of Ruby Tuesday - It went down well, but something more challenging would have been lovely.
After about a 15 minute wait our parmas arrived...
Now I've mentioned in the past that I don't mind stacking the parma on top of the chips if the size of the plate calls for it, but this was just ridiculous. There was more plate empty than there was with food on it. I quickly rescued the chips from under the parma and tucked in.
The schnitzel wasn't great. It was dense, dry, and horribly over-crumbed. It was thick, but so dry that thickness was hardly a positive. Very shaky foundations on this one.
Luckily, however, the schnitzel quality was probably the weakest part of the dish, as the toppings were outstanding. Not at all tight with the ham, great coverage of cheese (although the straight mozzarella could have had a bit more kick for my liking) and the slow-roast napoli was rich and flavoursome. They may have had a shaky start with their schnitzel, but they were doing their darnedest to make up for it with some quality toppings.
Ever since we discovered them back in 2012 we have been on the hunt for the elusive Bad Boy Chips. And yes, dear readers, these were bad boy chips. As good as ever. Crunchy on the outside, fluffy on the inside, perfectly seasoned and golden brown. As is standard when we come across bad boys - The only complaint is that there just aren't enough of them.
The salad looked great in the separate bowl it was served in, and the first two mouthfuls were fantastic. The well dressed cucumber, onion and tomato atop the lettuce leaves was a delight. Unfortunately after those mouthfuls it was a bowl of boring lettuce, all the good stuff was on top and gone in seconds. All up a decent salad, but nothing amazing.
For a parma in Crown $24 is a tad pricey for my liking, especially for the quality of chicken we received. For $24 I want the purest, juiciest, freshest chicken breast - Not the oversized chicken nugget we were served (okay thats a bit harsh ... but only a bit). From what I can tell Jimbo & Rex don't offer any sort of parma night that I can see - But Crown's specials change all the time, so its worth keeping an eye out.
Would I go back to Jimbo & Rex? Maybe for a bowl of chips. They're trying their hardest to make do with what they have, but until they can improve the quality of the schnitzel its not quite worth it. I will say I enjoyed it more than the parma at Cotta - So one recommendation I can give is that if you're on your way to the self proclaimed "Home of the parma" maybe take a detour and visit Jimbo & Rex instead - if only for the bad boys.
- Tasty toppings
- Bad boy chips
- Poor quality schnitzel
- Expensive for what was received.
Parma - 6.88
Chips - 8.38
Salad - 5.63
Value - 6.25
Total - 6.80