Tasting Hobart – Le Provencal

Hey all. Every time you go somewhere for a few days, I think it’s great to have at least ONE great meal out somewhere. Yes, that meal might set you back a ‘pretty penny’ as they say, but you regret not treating yourself at least once, and so today’s post, today’s ‘review’, today’s thought package, about the place we ate out at one night whilst at destination Hobart.

And so my wife suggested ‘Le Provencal’, a French restaurant with great online reviews, a little out of the centre of Hobart. It was about a ten minute bus ride towards South Hobart, which in Hobart is actually a little way away. We are talking around 2km from the very centre of town. Anyways, it is a very suburban spot, a corner building – an old house converted with the front part the restaurant. I am guessing the owner (who also served the tables) lived upstairs.

Turned out by chance that my parents had eaten there a few years back and as chance would have it, we were seated on the same table. There were two rooms for tables, one had five I think, and the smaller room had one large table. They had organised the seating in sessions, and we were due at the 815pm session – I presume this was due to Covid. However we arrived half an hour or more early as we had left plenty of time to get there, and luckily our table was already free and they were happy to serve us.

It was only half full or even a little less when we arrived, but by 815pm it was completely full. Interestingly they only open three or four days a week. It looked to be an old house, and it was a lovely setting for a meal.

My wife loves French cooking, which is why she chose the place, and we eagerly looked through the menu. It wasn’t a huge menu, but there was enough variety there to find something most people would like. Personally I was hanging out for one thing – a steak. I hadn’t had a steak in a few weeks and I hadn’t had beef since being in Tasmania – this was our last night there. So immediately I went for the Beouf Grille – Eye fillet steak with green salad and chips and a choice of Bearnaise, creamy black pepper sauce or Mustard Sauce. My wife went for a salmon steak.

For entrée we decided to share a dish, and to also share a dish for dessert. The entrée we went with was the Quenelles de Volaille Basilic – Chicken dumplings with a creamy basil and tarragon sauce, as the menu stated. What came out were two small rolls filled with a sort of chicken mince in a delicious sauce. It was really nice, and we were able to mop up the sauce with bread which is perhaps not ‘done’, I don’t know, but was certainly tasty.

Then it was time for the main course, and my wife really enjoyed her salmon. I had my steak and I have to say, it was close to the best steak I have ever had. It was so tender, it came apart perfectly and it was medium-rare. The mustard sauce was great too, but honestly it tasted perfect and it melted in my mouth. I am not great at describing food. But this was just perfection. I can’t remember every steak I’ve ever had, but this was better than any I can recall. I was blown away.

The proprietor was very friendly to start with, but then the customers came in and she was off her feet serving the tables. It was a two-person operation as far as we could see, which is great credit to them for doing such a great job and producing such brilliant food.

For dessert we had cherries and ice cream. The dessert menu was on a board and I gather it changes regularly. The cherries were in a brilliant sauce. All in all, as you can tell, we were really impressed by Le Provencal. The only drawback is it was expensive – $149 for two mains, one entrée and one dessert plus two glasses of wine. But you know, it was worth it. But it’s not the sort of place I could afford to eat at regularly, it’s a special occasion really and it was my wife and my 9th wedding anniversary the day before we left for Tasmania and we decided this would be our anniversary dinner. And it was a great one.

This IS fine dining, right? And it was a personable place run by two people presumably out of a passion for the food. Not for the money. Great setting, great food. What more do you want?

Thanks for reading! Take care and May the Journey Never End!

2 thoughts on “Tasting Hobart – Le Provencal

  1. If you were to get that meal in France, it’d be easily half the price you mentioned! Crazy that the markup is so high outside of the country, including Australia and the US. I’m glad you tried the quenelle, although traditionally it’s made with fish…all the same, it looks like you enjoyed it! Bon appétit, Andy!

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