Where - 60 Macedon Street, Sunbury
Price - $17.50 (Sports Bar)
Website - https://www.ballcourthotel.com.au
Reviewers – Lee & Nikki
Hello everyone! After a short break to gorge on Easter eggs and Anzac Biscuits we are back with a fresh parma review.
Last week I had the pleasure of spending Good Friday up at Daylesford. Abstaining from meat that day my meals consisted of fish tacos and margarita pizza, so when Saturday rolled around I was keen to get some chicken into me on the drive back to Melbourne. Rather than bee-line down the Western Freeway like we normally would we instead took the scenic route, through Musk, Trentham, Woodend and Mount Macedon.
We passed a lot of great looking pubs along the way but settled for the Mount Macedon Hotel. Now I’m not going to go into detail beyond my angry outburst on Twitter, but long story short we were unable to get a parma there on the day. Dejected we drove south, heading back to Melbourne, however it was now getting into the afternoon and I was still to have my parma fix. Knowing that the Calder Highway between Mt. Macedon and Melbourne has very little to offer in the way of pubs (other than the surprisingly tasty Houdini’s) we got off at the Sunbury exit in search of a parma to try… Which is the very convoluted story of how we came to be at the Ballcourt Hotel.
There are a few different rooms at the Ballcourt so for the record we reviewed the parma in the Sports Bar. We grabbed a seat and checked the menu for our target…
Perfect (and surprisingly cheap!) We placed our order at the bar and awaited the arrival of our now very late lunch.
If you’re in the Sports Bar of the Ballcourt the tap list is pretty dismal. Carlton, VB, Great Northern and … Well that is pretty much it. However, If you duck over to the attached “Wine Bar” there is a much more comprehensive selection, with 12 taps of rotating craft beer, along with the claim on their website that there are “100+ beers and ciders available”, the wine bar at the Ballcourt is an unexpected gem of craft beer in Sunbury … I just wish they had’ve rolled a couple of kegs of the good stuff over to the Sports Bar side of the pub.
Our parmas arrived about 20 minutes after we placed our order and to be honest I was pleasantly surprised. For $17.50 my expectations were low, I was expecting a supermarket deli window heart shaped schnitzel with toppings straight from a tin - However the chicken used for the Ballcourt’s schnitzel was unprocessed, pure chicken breast. Well cooked, juicy and surprisingly thick.
The toppings were mostly fine. Great cheese coverage grilled to a lovely golden brown. The napoli sauce was acceptable… nothing to write home about but nothing offensive. For the first time in literal weeks worth of reviews the parma at the Ballcourt does have ham, however the flavour was mostly lost behind the other elements of the dish.
The beer battered chips were very enjoyable. Well cooked, well seasoned and served (mostly) out from underneath the parma. We might like a fancier chip on occasion but to be honest its hard to go wrong with classic beer battered chips alongside a parma. Some dipping sauce would have been a nice addition however even without these chips did the job well.
The salad was fine. Felt like a bit of an afterthought but the dressing was flavoursome and it did a good job of breaking up the dish a little. Nothing terrible but nothing great … Not much to say about the salad at all to be honest!
Like I said above for $17.50 I was expecting a bargain basement quality parma, so the fact that the Ballcourt put up a quality feed for such a low price is outstanding, and with Wednesday offering up a $15 parma & pot night its hard to go wrong.
After a shitty start to the day the Ballcourt got us out of a jam and served up a surprisingly decent parma in the process. If you live in Sunbury you probably already know about the Ballcourt, but if for some reason you have yet to I’d recommend going down to give it a crack. It’s a no frills, honest, down to earth feed that I think you’d struggle to walk away from disappointed.