Inner-City Glamping All Winter Long

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Fitzroy’s Grub Food Van is upping its ‘luxury picnic service’ this winter by extending its kitchen hours into the evening. From 1 May 2015 cosy winter dinners will be served to greenhouse glampers every Tuesday to Saturday evening.

Grub’s seasonal and shareable menus are served indoors and/or outdoors as the seasons dictate. In summer ‘picnickers’ sit in the courtyard soaking up the sun next to the Airstream that pumps out Five Senses coffee and bespoke water beverages for the friendly hounds that have made Grub their local hangout too. When winter comes, service moves inside the large greenhouse where picnic tables sit amongst an eccentric sprawl of garden gnomes and bric-a-brac, a ping-pong table beckons caffeinated heroes, and the plant-life sees a communing of green thumbs.

Grub has always encouraged diners to break bread, to share, to eat informally around the campfire of their Fitzroy postcode. There is table service, but the idea at Grub is to make yourself comfortable and the picnic will come to you. In the three years since Grub began as a tea-and-toast café running out of the Airstream, Grub has retained its casual come-as-you-are demeanor whilst growing its fully-fledged breakfast, lunch and beverages menus into covetable feasts.

The new dinner menus follow suit. Chefs Damien Wearne (Seven Seeds) and Steve Giblett (The European) will focus on market-fresh, seasonal fare and a menu that encourages a shared and social dining experience best consumed by the warmth of Grub’s fire.

On any particular night the winter feast might offer seared lamb back-strap with smoked chèvre and roast baby beats, organic poussin with potato dauphinoise, grilled garfish with pea puree and fresh horseradish, semolina gnocchi with wild mushroom ragout, Middle Eastern spiced chicken with wild rice, almonds, golden raisins and yoghurt, and a vegetable stew of borlotti beans, purple potatoes, roast carrot and Tuscan kale.

Front of House manager Jette Dreger (Panama Dining Room) created the wine list in a similar spirit of en famille. The list encompasses Australian wines with a focus on biodynamic, organic and small wineries, with a range of varieties that will all be available by glass, on rotation. What’s open on a particular night will depend on the collective inclination.

Mixologist and barista Yuta Taneka (Auction Rooms) has taken charge of the beer, cider and cocktail menu while also overseeing the daytime tea and coffee service.

The Grub kitchen opens at 8am and will continue to serve breakfast and lunch until 5pm, when the dinner menu kicks in. Drinks and coffee are always served from 8am until close.

FAST FACTS

WHAT: Glamping Dinners

WHERE: Grub Food Van, 87-89 Moor Street, Fitzroy

WHEN: Open 8am-10pm Tues – Sat, 8am-6pm Sun. Dinner is served: Tues – Sat 5pm-9pm, Drinks until close.

PRICE: Starters and sharing plates $12-$16, Mains $12-$27

WEB: www.grubfoodvan.com.au

SOCIAL: Instagram @grubfoodvan / Facebook / Twitter @grubfoodvan

PHONE: 03 9419 8991 – Bookings req for 10+

Gram Magazine

GRAM magazine is a monthly compilation of how a city experiences all things food and drink. It does away with traditional magazine formulas, offering instead a snapshot of articles, opinions and reviews, published online by local food bloggers. It has been created to give its readers access to varied, unbiased and unedited opinions about eating and drinking throughout the city, from independent and local sources.