In the mood for something casual and it was a rather easy decision choosing a restaurant for our first dinner in the Red Centre. Kent and I liked the contemporary yet relaxed setting of the Walpa Lobby Bar bistro. Its laid-back atmosphere suited our frame of mind for something simple and uncomplicated. Just like that, we turned up in our easy-going attire, without booking, and were welcomed by its friendly staff.
An Outback Inspired Menu
Typical bar food with an outback twist, that’s how I would describe the Walpa menu. Shared plates, bar snack; burgers… Herb symbol at the end of the dish’s name, that tells you it has bush tucker ingredients, and that’s what we were after…
Gin And Tonic Please, And Grazing Platter For Two
Nothing is more refreshing than a tall glass of gin and tonic on a hot summer’s day. Being outback is no exception! Well even more so, being in the desert heat.. if you ask Kent and I. We toasted with our drinks on having finally made it to the Red Centre, and ordered the Grazing Platter for Two to share.
Kangaroo mettwurst, prosciutto; rosemary olives, Persian feta; parmesan cheese, dolmades; hummus and grilled pane loaf. A familiar antipasto except for the kangaroo mettwurst which was much dryer than the pork versions. Kangaroo is a very lean meat after all; the good thing was that it was sliced very thinly. Kent didn’t mind the dryness because he felt that it fitted within the range of dry cured meat. We ran out of grilled pane loaf but instead of getting some more of it, we asked our waiter for the menu. We still had room for more deliciousness.
Pan Seared Potato Gnocchi
Emu chorizo sausage, green peas; grated feta, preserved lemon and caraway pangrattato. I’d had at least two great gnocchi dishes during our Italy travel in 2018, but potato gnocchi was not the main reason that attracted us from this menu.. it was the emu chorizo sausage we were interested in trying. Our potato gnocchi turned out to be light and fluffy in texture, it was a perfect vehicle for the moreish sauce. The emu chorizo sausage was not like chicken! It was juicy and had a tasty distinct flavour. Kent and myself were both satisfied with this dish we had chosen. In fact, it was among one of the four plates I enjoyed the most from our Red Centre trip!
The Destination Where The Wind Stops
‘Walpa, taking on the Pitjantjatjara name for wind…’ We learnt from the menu that, ‘for centuries travel has been defined by the wind. Walpa Lobby Bar provides a sense of arrival.’ Well what a coincidence.. or perhaps the ancient wisdom simply thinks alike. In Chinese culture, we call it 接風 ‘to catch wind’ when holding a welcoming dinner or banquet for visitors from afar. ‘The Anangu people listen to the “walpa” create a whistling that sings across the desert. The Walpa Lobby Bar is the destination. The resting place where the wind stops.’