Maybe it was after too many months of silly experimental food – of beef ribs with strawberry, charred veges and burnt herbs, and in Melbourne recently, dried jellyfish, wakame and ants.
But for whatever reason, from my first beefy sip of French onion soup at the Boulcott Street Bistro, I was entranced. This was old-school cooking – not just ingredients trending across the plate. These mains had painstaking sauces, not just drizzles and vinaigrettes.
Opened in 1991 to rising competition from upscale French bistros such as Cafe Bastille, Roxburgh Bistro, Bouquet Garni, Metropolitain, Francois and Le Canard, the Boulcott has outlasted the lot. As such, it seems a bit like our suburban butchers: those who have survived are doing well.