August 23, 2015

Ross Bay Pub, Fairfield, Victoria

I haven't done music bingo in a while.  It's a fun enough reason to sit in the pub, have a bevy and laugh with your friends.  It's even better when you win two prizes for your efforts of recognizing the words in a chorus and marking it on a grid.

Which is what I did on Saturday night with a friend and some of her friends.  At the Ross Bay Pub.  The Ross Bay used to be a White Spot and is now a corner pub in a strip mall.  From the outside, it looks like a cafe with darkened windows and a secluded patio.  Inside, it's narrow, with a some tables up on a higher level, and some high tables scattered around the front as well, making it feel cramped, even if it isn't really.

We gathered around a six person table and were served waters pretty quickly.  Drink service took a bit longer, as there'd just been a rush of new diners, probably all here for the music bingo.  Still I got the Saturday special pint of Lucky (just for a change, right?) and ordered the BLT sandwich.

The Lucky Lager was cold and wet.  It disappeared quickly as I'd just cycled down and was thirsty.  It was replaced by a pint of the Russell Blood Alley Bitter.  This lasted much longer (most of the evening). It's rich, flavourful pint, with a nice complex set of malty and hoppy flavours.  Mmmm.

My food was pretty good as well.  A mid-size door stop of a sandwich, a good pile of lettuce and tomato, and a couple of rashers of bacon.  Not stuffed full of meat, but it worked out well.  The fries were big, beef-eater cut planks of potatoes, covered with some sort of crispy batter.  This gave them a big crunch, but also made them stick together.

Two of my friends shared a huge platter with wings, waffle fries, calamari, potato skins and onion rings.  This was a big pile of stuff and was more than enough for two folks.  I tried a bit of the Calamari, and it was decent... a bit peppery, but the flesh was tender and not rubberized.

The stuffed Yorkshire went down well too and was served in a big pile. This was to make it look like a massive portion while it was just a big one instead.  The veggie pizza at the table looked just average, and like the base had been pre-toasted.  The rack-o-ribs was a full foot long or more of juicy ribs, that I am told were good too.

All in, the food has a more than passing grade.  It's pub food, done well, but with no frills or extras.  And no reason why it should be frilly or fussy.  It's not that place, it's a community corner pub.  With it's big TVs and music bingo.

The bingo is hosted by an amiable, and occasionally funny compere.  He'd toured and played in a band called 'Shag' for a while.  So he dropped in a few celebrities names of people he'd met, and bands he loved as he played them.  I agree, Blondie is not disco, but there they were in the 70's Disco round.  It was fun for two rounds, but after that, I could have done with a bit of low-level music, coupled with a kicked back chat with the people at my table, rather than another round, featureing classic rock snippets.

Still, we won 3 prizes out 9 at our table... I took home a Molson Canadian branded cooler bag.  I won another one earlier in the evening (with golf balls) but passed this on to my fellow brit at the table who realized the uses it might have for taking beer around the disc golf courses.

Cycled home, a full belly and a happy memory.  Not a bad spot, and will visit again.

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