MasterSteak round 1: the Queen’s Arms

25 08 2009

The first challenger for the MasterSteak crown is the Queen’s Arms hotel.

Found on James St, New Farm, halfway between the la-di-dah James St Market and the excellent Petersen’s Butcher. This bodes well. On Mondays it has a sirloin steak special for $12.50.

The pub itself is nicely refurbished, getting big points from the judges for arm-bee-arnce and atmosphere. Little Creatures on tap was a definite point in its favour; $6 a schooner was a little unexpected.

Pros:

  • atmosphere: nice, relaxed, classy without being wanky, no fluro lights blaring down
  • quality: steak was beautifully cooked, with the greek salad, olive tapenade, battered chips and creamy mustard sauce all delicious
  • speed: the food arrived well before T1 had threatened to chew her own arm off and eat it and nobody even thought about going to the loo to try to magic the food into arriving
  • audibility: good acoustics meant we could have a conversation at a normal level, quite the novelty for us
  • location: easy to get to, easy to park and easy to get home (on a normal day we would have walked but the Architect had the car)
  • price: $12.50 for a good steak is nothing to be sneezed at
  • finally, a special mention of the comfy seats. They were comfortable. We sat in them.

Cons:

  • beer price: mentioned separately by all of us, we’ve obviously become too used to cheap beer.
  • size of steak: T2 is a working man (although not a “working man”) and he can eat. A lot. T1 was fresh from the gym (pronounced “gime”, rhymes with time) and hungry. The Architect had a small lunch and was looking for food. The sirloin, while tasty, was about half the size of a Caxton steak.
  • limited choice: there were two specials – the sirloin and a chicken burrito. Of course, the full menu had many options. But we were there for the cheap menu as per the criteria.

Verdict: re-match.

The main issue was the quantity, but given our benchmark is $16 per person, we decided we need to get $16 worth of food before we can make a proper judgement. So we’ll head back at some stage to try again, this time ordering some of the nice-looking extras to feed the ravenous hordes.

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