Where? - 47 Pearson St. Brunswick west
Price? - $15 Wednesday parma night. $23.50 normally
Website? - http://www.grandviewbrunswick.com.au/
Reviewers – Carly, Kim, Lee, Nikki, Pat & Shanan
It's redo week! The week we revisit a pub that has already been reviewed due to changes in the menu, recommendation that it has improved or gotten worse since our last review, or for pubs that we feel just didn't get a fair shake the first time around.
Brunswick's Grandview Hotel has been on our redo list for quite some time - Pretty much since we walked out the door the first time we reviewed it.
Back in 2013 I was contacted by a group of Swinburne Uni students who were filming a documentary about parmas, we arranged to meet up at the Grandview, grab a parma and have a chat. It was a fun night even though in the end we hit the cutting room floor of the documentary. However to get permission to film at the Grandview we had to break our golden rule of reviewing - We had to let the pub know ahead of time that we were coming.
The parma was delicious (You can check out our original review here), looked beautiful and was presented perfectly - a little too perfectly, and it always niggled me that we might not have received the same level quality parma as anyone walking in off the street would have received. 3 years later redo week rolls around and I hear that the Grandview is now offering a $15 parma night with free trivia and $15 jugs of Hawkers IPA, that's all the push I need to load up the parma bus and head back to the Grandview!
The Grandview is just how I remembered it. A cosy backstreets local with friendly staff, fun atmosphere and a spacious dining room to the side. The trivia was being held in the front bar this week so we pulled up a chair and prepared ourselves for the quizzing of a lifetime.
This is normally where I'd show a grab of the menu, but as we're here for parma night and parma night alone this is the only information we were interested in...
Although, for the curious, the parma on the non-parma night menu clocks in at $23.50.
We ordered our meals, grabbed a couple of jugs and discussed funny sounding team names. As I've mentioned the beer of choice for the night was Hawkers Pale Ale, but the Grandview also has quite a decent tap list if you feel like something a little fancier...
I love when pubs have boards with their available beers like this, it makes my job so much easier.
Our parmas arrived shortly before the trivia kicked off...
For $15 this was a quality bit of schnitzel. Biggest gripe is that it was a little overcooked and slightly dry, but other than that this was a damn tasty bird. Pure chicken breast, well crumbed and thick enough that you wont walk away hungry.
It would seem that a few parmas around the table spent a little time under the heat lamps as the others were prepared, as there were a couple of complaints about being served a lukewarm parma, hopefully that was just a once off glitch.
The toppings were plentiful and flavoursome, despite some minor coverage issues (there was a bit of nude schnitz around the edges) they weren't at all tight with the quantity of ham, napoli and cheese. The napoli was much richer than last time around, 2013's napoli had more of a soupy texture while 2016's was much heavier on the tomato paste.
The cheese was tasty and well cooked, it slipped around the parma a little bit while eating, but it was manageable. The leg ham made itself known with slight smokey flavour. For $15 parma night? Definitely a satisfying meal.
The chips were outstanding. Beer battered, piping hot and well seasoned - just the way we like 'em. I was a little disappointed to see that the garlic aioli wasn't included like it was in 2013, however I'm not sure if we should attribute that to the doco crew or the fact that we were eating in the front bar as opposed to the dining room. It was a bit of a mixed bag with serving sizes for the chips. Everyone got a decent serving, but some lucky ducks definitely scored the lions share with a massive pile accompanying their parma.
The salad was okay. Plenty of it with fresh ingredients, however a little more dressing would have been nice. Acceptable, but didn't blow us away.
$15 with $15 jugs and free trivia? Value this week is off the charts. The trivia alone kept us wildly entertained until nearly 10pm (the Funky Bunch definitely know how to put together an entertaining quiz), and the cheap beers were just icing on the cake.
From what we saw last night I had been worrying about this review for the last three years for nothing - The quality of the parma at the Grandview is just as good now as it was then, There were some slight inconsistencies and issues that could be chalked up to an insanely rushed night in the kitchen - but nothing too terrible. In the end we wound up coming in 2nd in the trivia (ironically to a team calling themselves "The Parmy Army" who came in first) and took home a $30 voucher for our next visit, which won't be too far in the future I'm sure.
Oh, and be sure to book in advance if you intend to join the trivia night - The joint was packed to capacity on the Wednesday we visited.
I can definitely recommend the Grandview's parma night, It was an amazingly entertaining night with good grub, good beer and good people - What more can you ask for?