I think good seafood isn’t one of Melbourne’s strengths. I’ve dined at a number of seafood-focussed places, and they’re generally unmemorable… EXCEPT Claypots!
Normally, I’d go to Claypots in St Kilda. But this time round, I chose to take my visiting folks to the South Melbourne branch and give that a go. We’d just finished grocery shopping at South Melbourne Market that afternoon, so having lunch here, at the market itself, was convenient.
It wasn’t too busy at lunch time that Saturday. Fit-out is vibrant and, I believe, quite Spanish… with bold red walls, coloured maritime tiles, and a central feature bar where you can watch the cooking happen.
The menu consists of tapas-style small dishes. Lunch started on a high with these succulent, perfectly cooked scallops. The sauce was vinegary piquant with an Asian hint of sesame oil. Mom kept shaking her head, exclaiming “Wow!!”.
Equally loved were these legendary king prawns. A must-have at St Kilda branch, I was happy to see this dish featured here too, although served a little differently. My folks were just stunned at how fresh, chargrilled and tasty these prawns were.
The thing about Claypots is you’re able to get seafood straight-up. It’s cooked simply… grilled or pan-fried, with head, legs, shells everything! And then the freshness of the seafood does the rest of the job.
All that said… despite its sweet flesh, these grilled scampi were, according to dad, a little bit too ‘skimpy’ in the flesh department. Ha ha ha, now you know where my bad blog puns come from.