Dier Makr. What a funny name. I didn’t even know of its existence even though it’s a one hatted restaurant in Hobart. I had my eye on so many other restaurants and had already got my reservations and lists together, when one of my baristas told me I had to go here.
I usually don’t actually do something unless more than one person says the same thing except on rare occasion, and this time I thought, why not. These guys have good taste so I’ll try it out! And that resulted in me reshuffling Franklin from dinner to lunch to accommodate for this place.
I only did a very small amount of research for this, just enough to check if it was a nice restaurant or not (I still didn’t realise it was hatted), and what intrigued me the most was the menu. I like succinct menus and prefer ones with the main ingredients and processes described, so this very “simple” sounding menu wasn’t enough to trigger my imagination since I wasn’t used to the style. But the reviews were all good, so I left it at that. Let’s give it a go!
This place is fairly small (20 seats?) and has really cute decor. Two things I noticed were one: those wine glasses had really nice stems. Super thin, I don’t think as thin as Zaltos, but they got close. I really liked the stems! How do I know this? Because this is a hipster restaurant, so I went and ordered an orange wine. But because wine glasses are tall, and because I still don’t know how to take photos, I didn’t get a good shot.
And two, if you choose the tap water, it comes in a fish shaped jug. But not just that, it’s a glurgle jug! Basically, it gluggs a little bit before the pour, then it goes, glug glug glug if there’s enough water to go back down after the pour! The way I described it probably makes no sense; it’s basically a jug that makes noises as water is poured. Maybe google it.
Beet that root
First up, the beetroot dish. What cute little morsels! This was eaten with hands, and it was a slice of what appeared to be raw pickled beetroot and curd on the inside. A failsafe tasty thing!
Oh, this was cool. I’ve never seen this before. Half a lettuce with oyster and oyster cream, and crunchy bits. See, I thought maybe we would get just raw oysters and something interesting with the lettuce, but it was actually the other way around! Having the oysters lightly grilled was really nice, and they were really good oysters! My friend doesn’t eat oysters so I had more piled on top of my plate, so I was happy.
I actually really liked that the descriptions of each dish were listed as they are, because now I realised that I had no idea what to expect! This is a new adventure!
On the menu, it did describe the beef as raw I guess. I would have thought they’d just put beef. Maybe because raw beef freaks some people out if they don’t know beforehand? It didn’t matter to me, and this was really, really good. Again, really flavoursome beef. It must be the Cape Grim stuff because the cows from there are just so tasty! It was lined with sour cream and topped with sansho leaf, I think. Really good stuff!
Isn’t this so cute! These were tiny and adorable. Apple roses that were bound in “apple leather” (like rollups?), and apple puree inside. This didn’t just taste like apple though. There were varying textures and acidity levels within these bite sized treats, so it felt like I was tasting all parts of the apple, but separately! A simple looking, but complex palate cleanser.
Really wide beans
When the waiter gave us this dish, she said that the chef described this as “peas and friends” – how cute! I seem to really love vegetable dishes now. I can’t remember exactly when it all changed, but the headlines that Yellow made was probably a good starting point. Anyway, broad beans! Yay! And peas! The creaminess of that burrata too. I think it was burrata. It was super creamy, and tasted like the inside of a burrata. Oh yeah. Also, my friend was convinced that the crunchy bits were fried chicken skin, but I thought that this might be a vegetarian dish. Turns out she was right, the waiter confirmed that it was indeed chicken!
I’ll admit, I have no idea because I didn’t ask what “blue eye’ was. I assumed it was cod, but what if there’s a different fish that also has blue eye in its name??? So I will always have to describe this as just “blue eye” as a result. Sigh. I really should do better next time. Self chiding aside, this fish was really tasty! And what made it tastier was the pil pil sauce! That stuff was really addictive! The fried celeriac on the side was nice too, but I don’t really like celeriac much so I was kind of wishing it wasn’t there, even though it’s the tastiest celeriac I’ve tried.
And dessert is served. Fig leaf ice cream with peach and macadamia. That’s a cool biscuity thing on top, though it hid the rest of the dish. There was a lovely fig gel surprise underneath the ice cream that I totally loved! Again, because it was described as fig leaf, I didn’t expect it to be the ice cream component of the dish. I love it when I guess wrongly!
It was a very quick, short and light dinner. I love that there were some really unexpected combinations (that lettuce and oyster dish was brain-bending!!!) along with classics (beetroot, beef). It was a really reasonably priced restaurant, but I felt like there maybe wasn’t enough food. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t hungry after it, but I did think that I could eat a lot more, and the Vue de Monde joke of walking out and eating a burger seriously crossed my mind (but a small tasty burger, I couldn’t have eaten a large tasty burger). I couldn’t be exactly sure if I was hungry or not simply because the last three days in Melbourne, I’d been absolutely stuffing myself to the brim so I was worried about my metabolism being in overdrive too. Luckily, I didn’t actually get hungry and I didn’t wake up particularly hungrier than usual the next day, so the serving size here was fine. It was just me being panicky, especially in contrast to Tipo 00’s $69 chef’s menu where I actually didn’t finish one of the dishes.
Overall it’s a great place and super causal, but, a little too hipster for me, if such a thing is possible. I’d need to come here with someone classier and more hipster than me to be able to feel at home here. The food and the people were great though, so nothing to fault there. The waiter was super friendly and when I told her why I’d chosen this restaurant, she guessed correctly which barista recommended the place! So yeah, very nice, surprising dishes, but I felt a little out of place.
Also, you definitely have to look at the receipt here. Why? Because the chefs receive the order names slightly differently than what’s on the board, and it’s a fun read 🙂