Sunday, December 09, 2007


I had wanted to go to Houndstooth ever since I read Michael's review on Where's The Beef. One other time that I tried to go fell through. Hence, this time when a group of us were going to watch Beowulf 3D at IMAX (the 3D is spectacular, movie is probably just worth watching to see that but otherwise movie storyline was terrible) on Rathdowne, I suggested that we go to Houndstooth for dinner. Michael had written how he had walked past it for months without going in. Well Houndstooth probably isn't such a secret anymore since they got reviewed in The Age.

We got there around quarter to eight and all the communal tables were already filled. There was one empty table, which had been booked. Luckily for us, the kind waitress said that we could squeeze in and might have to scoot together a bit when the other diners arrived. It turned out that by the time the booked patrons arrived, the couple at the end of our communal table left so we just stuck the booking note over there instead.

I like the look and feel of the place, small and cosy. The noise level is buzzing without being so loud that you can't hear your own friends. There is fairly low mood lighting but still retains enough lumination for you to see your food.

The menu is very simple, consisting of a few items written on the chalk board. These items change constantly so you never know what you will get. There are a few options for entrees, mains and desserts. There are also side dishes such as chorizos I saw. It costs a extremely cheap $10 for two courses, and $15 for three. You can choose between any two courses, entree and mains or mains and dessert. Everyone went for two courses, but being the ever diligent food reporter that I am, I went for three.

As Michael wrote in his post, the beer list is impressive indeed. They had heaps of ale, which I like. They even had the Leff Blonde beer that I just sample a week ago at Belgian Beer Cafe. I thought that beer was exclusive to that cafe, but I guess not. I choose the Pale Ale in the end. The other guys went for various ales as well. Kin went for a lemonade, which the waitress poured into a glass for him. There was a bit left in the bottle, but instead of giving it to him, she put it away. That was a bit strange, and probably the only small niggle I had.

Despite Kin's constant questioning of "Where's the food, I'm hungry", the food didn't take that long. It was a bit longer than I expected considering how few choices they had, but it looked like the whole place has that relaxed attitude.

I choose the Scallops on Spinach for entrees. Two scallops sat beautifully on their shells above a bed of spinach. The scallops were dressed with a lime type dressing, simple but delicious. I dipped the spinach in the tangy sauce of the scallops as well.

For mains, I got the Osso Bucco. The osso bucco was served with some potatoes. The large chunk of meat I got also included the bone, with the soft marrow being dug out by me quickly. The meat was very tender and feel apart when I went to eat it.

Finally for dessert, I wanted the Pecan Tart. However, they ran out of that, so instead I got the Lemon Cheesecake. I ate the cheesecake before remembering to take a photo, so use your imagination and picture a thin slice of cheesecake, lightly kissed in colour by the yellow of a lemon. It contains an outer shell of crumbed biscuit and is served cleanly on a white plate, with a small dollop of white cream waiting for the cheesecake to swim in. (Ok that's as best I can do with my description, do the rest with your own minds). The cheesecake was soft and fluffy and contained the tang of lemon, very nice.

The service was good. Things were served fairly timely, after each subsequent dish was finished. The waitress apologised for not having the pecan tart and was the one who seated us despite not having a reservation.

Overall Rating: 14/20, Food is simple but good and exceptional value.

Scores: 1-9: Unacceptable, don't bother. 10-11: Just OK,some shortcomings. 12: Fair. 13: Getting there. 14: Recommended. 15: Good. 16: Really good. 17: Truly excellent. 18: An outstanding experience. 19-20: Approaching perfection, Victoria's best.

Houndstooth on Urbanspoon


  1. Are they open for lunch everyday? Vida

  2. Vida, they aren't open for lunch. On the entry door window scribbled in pen has the opening hours as "six till late".

  3. I thought I saw you at Imax on Friday night (I recognised you from the photos on here). I didn't want to introduce myself in case I was wrong!

  4. Agnes, were you at IMAX too? You should have come up and said hi. I always love to meet new people, especially other food bloggers. So next time if you see me wondering around, please say hi. I'm terrible with spotting people. You could be standing right in front of me and I still may miss you.

    I've never bumped into anyone I recognise off their blog yet, but if I did, I would go up and say hi anyway. The worse is that I get it wrong, no big deal.

    I have met up with some other food bloggers quite a bit lately ever since the bloggers banquet. You should come to the next bloggers banquet.

  5. Fat and glutonous Do,

    you were patient at this slow joint because you already eaten earlier and the cinema was really close by. Other wise you would have cracked a hissy fit.


  6. Anonymous, it wasn't that slow. You were just really impatient. I ate a bit early in the day, so that did help with my hunger.

    Of course the cinema was close by, I chose it as that was one of the reasons, so we wouldn't have to rush off. I don't chuck hissy fits, you're the one who chucks them when we don't get free kimchi.


  7. Fat dumb and ignorant Do.

    Please refer to your photo of scallops. Now tell me!!! Does that take 1/2 hour to prepare. And let's not forget their generousity with my soft drink. You'd think any place that sells you a lemonade for $3.50 would include the bottle in which they poured it from. NO.... they kept the last 50ml for the next customer.

    Do stupid and biased in his reviews. He must be connected to the Chef wearing drag.

  8. Yeah he's a fool to pick that place. He sure made my parking cheap and affordable.

  9. Anonymous, half an hour is an exaggeration. The rest of the food came out at a good pace after that. As for your soft drink, if you didn't see them pour it, you would be perfectly happy to pay the same price for a glass, like many other restaurants.

    Finally, I wish I was connected to the chef and got a free meal out of this. Unfortunately, reality is that I gave a good score because I felt it was good.

    Paul Hii, as if I'm the only one to blame for your parking error. It was KP's sharp eyes that saw that spot. And all three of us looked at the signs and misread it, we think. The inspector may still be wrong.

  10. Whoah, Thanh, your friends are real hecklers! :-)

    Glad you enjoyed Houndstooth anyway. It ain't perfect but dang, is it cheap!

  11. Cindy, aren't they so bad. Luckily we joke about it all the time. What I write on my food blog and their comments are an endless amount of entertainment for us.

    I really liked Houndstooth. I don't know about the others but I thought the food was good. And service wasn't that slow, just that they were really hungry because we were so late. And it is so cheap. I'm going back for sure, and hopefully getting pecan tart this time.

  12. Yep, I was at IMAX - if I see you again I will say hi. :) I wanted to go to the last bloggers banquet but I was overseas but I'm keen to attend the next one!

    The funny thing is that I was thinking about going to Houndstooth before IMAX too, but changed my mind at the last minute!

  13. Did you watch Beowulf as well? The 3D was amazing, too bad about the storyline of the film.

    You should definitely come to the next bloggers banquet, it was heaps of fun and met so many new people. I think there will be one organised in January or February of next year.

    Imagine if you went to Houndstooth as well, that would have been a big coincidence.

    Where did you end up eating?

  14. Again Fat stupid biased Do,

    you are letting your sexual desire for the chef cloud your judgement for this place.

    The food DID take long. Half an hour was not an exagerration. I was watching the clock the whole time while you were rubbing your back on the two queer dudes behind us.

    This may be fairly priced place, but even for $10 I could have stuffed myself at the nearest Hungry Jacks and still enjoy my night at IMax.

    I reckon one of your blog friends runs that joint, otherwise, you would have given it a 9/20.

  15. Anonymous, well I didn't feel it was that long.

    For $10 you probably could stuff yourself at Hungry Jacks. But that's not the point. If we are going to compare everything to Hungry Jacks, of course everything is expensive. A $50 meal would be ridiculous then wouldn't it. But it's different types of food that we are getting. Your lard burger at Hungry Jacks is ok sometimes, but not everytime.

    No I'm not that lucky to have blog friends that run restaurants where I can get discounts or freebies.