Top Paddock Location: 658 Church St, Richmond, VIC 3121 Contact: 03 9429 4332 It’s hard not to fall in love with Top Paddock. Inhabiting a huge space at the edge of the Yarra and Church Street, this gorgeous, light-filled establishment brings a surprisingly relaxed, beachy appeal to one of Melbourne’s inner-city neighbourhoods. And with the same team behind Melbourne institution Two Birds One Stone backing this one, it’s good to know that you’re in exceptionally safe hands. The atmosphere is a delight in itself; an open expanse, with split levels and plenty of seating hugging the walls outside for those looking to catch a bit of sun. White tiles feature throughout, and natural greenery dangles from above. Five Senses Coffee reins supreme here, and there’s even a roaster on site to create some pretty nifty signature blends.
Gin and lime cured ocean trout fillet ($18.5)
Gin and lime cured ocean trout fillet ($18.5)What you’ll immediately notice is that all of the dishes at Top Paddock are beautifully presented. That gin and lime cured trout fillet was so fresh; a thick cut that was crispy on the skin and a vibrant pink within that tasted rich when paired with the goats curd. The potato galette was delicate as ever, with the individual layers easily parting. That being said, whilst the individual elements were all well cooked, I found the combination of flavours to be lacking, with no medium to ultimately bring the dish together.
Steak sandwich ($19)M enjoyed her steak sandwich, which was absolutely huge in size; she struggled to finish it. All in all we’re quite fond of Top Paddock; if not for the impeccable food, then for the wonderful fit-out, which is capable of putting anyone at ease. Don’t forget to pick up something sweet from the counter on your way out; those cakes look deadly.