Don’t underestimate the cocktails at this laid-back New Orleans smokehouse.
Melbourne is nothing if not cosmopolitan, and if the city’s eateries are a melting pot of culinary styles, then Le Bon Ton in Collingwood is contributing the slow-cooked flavour of America’s deep south to the mix. Primarily influenced by New Orleans, but with the aroma of Texas barbecue drifting tantalisingly through the air, Le Bon Ton is a bar and supper club from the brothers Balleau at the Glasshouse Hotel, formerly Hell Towers Saloon.
The French style of the Belle Epoch coffee houses of Louisiana can be seen at Le Bon Ton; the name is a corruption of the English translation of The Good Times, which roll in New Orleans like nowhere else on Earth.
Another import from Europe is the somewhat frightening selection of absinthes, from which the 72% abv Lemercier jumps out as a try-before-you-die option (the end coming sooner rather than later, one suspects).
If you make it through the cocktail room you’ll find, in the courtyard beyond, an impressive set-up of smokers which do the business on a selection of meat cuts for up to 16 hours. Jerry Sutphin, an Alabama native raised in Texas runs things out here, so the flavours are the real deal, we guarantee…
LE BON TON CUISINE: American, Barbecue, Seafood ADDRESS: 51 Gipps St, Collingwood PH: 9416 4341 HOURS: Tue – Thurs 5pm – 1am / Fri 5pm – 6am / Sat 12pm – 6am / Sun 12pm – 12am WEBSITE:www.lebonton.com.au TWITTER:@lebontonmelb FACEBOOK:lebontonmelb