16/20

Pulp Kitchen

1 Wakefield Gardens, Ainslie shops, ACT

All Details

Catriona Jackson

Dark chocolate mousse, pear sorbet, ricotta doughnuts at Pulp Kitchen
Dark chocolate mousse, pear sorbet, ricotta doughnuts at Pulp Kitchen Photo: Graham Tidy

Canberra Times Top 20 for 2012

Specialising in European brasserie-style eating, Pulp Kitchen is a breath of fresh air on the Canberra scene. It combines informality with very high standards in food and service, drawing on the great culinary traditions of France and other European nations.

Everything is available in entree and main sizes (even the steaks), the service is charming, and the food is exciting. Tucked into a slightly noisy space in the Ainslie shops, a change of owner and chef has taken place this year with the departure of founder Christian Hauberg, but the place has lost none of its magic, and has regained some of its energy.

You might start with a few excellent local oysters, enlivened with a feisty lime sorbet. You could move on to a spectacular veloute of white fish, creamy with the depth of flavour and sweet subtlety that really good fish soup has, with light-as-air sea bream quenelles popped on top.

Or you could sample a great carpaccio, raw beef sliced paper thin, and dressed with oil and lemon, with a little salad of radish and beetroot wafers and delicate greens for crunchy contrast. This is a great dish, a reminder of how good carpaccio can be.

Homemade bread comes crusty and warm from the oven, with good oil for dipping.

It is hard to go past a steak here, especially given the entree-sized option, and the respect and skill used in preparing it. If you have never had a really good steak, Pulp is a revelation. The texture is just different, resistant but tender, and with a wonderful richness of flavour. The beef often comes with great shoestring fries and a punchy, bearnaise. Add a side serve of excellent green beans, and the meal is complete.

If you can save space for dessert or cheese, do so. Chocolate mousse is glossy and dark and rich, set off with crisp little ricotta doughnuts crusted with cinnamon sugar and a lovely ball of silky pear sorbet. 

Pulp Kitchen is a restaurant with personality and confidence, and spectacular food made with skill and passion.

How we score: Food and Wine Annual Top 20

Rate this restaurant

Rate this restaurant:

Use [left] and [right] keys to rate, [enter] to submit, [esc] to cancel.

Rate this restaurant with 0.5 a star Rate this restaurant with 1 star Rate this restaurant with 1.5 stars Rate this restaurant with 2 stars Rate this restaurant with 2.5 stars Rate this restaurant with 3 stars Rate this restaurant with 3.5 stars Rate this restaurant with 4 stars Rate this restaurant with 4.5 stars Rate this restaurant with 5 stars

Write a review

Thanks for voting!

Write a review

1 Wakefield Gardens, Ainslie shops, ACT

  • Cuisine - European, British, Modern Australian
  • Features - Accepts bookings, BYO, Licensed, Outdoor seating
  • Chef(s) - Keaton McDonnell
  • Owners - Daniel Giordani and Nathan Brown
  • Opening Hours - Lunch Wed to Fri, dinner Tues to Sat, weekend brunch from 9am
  • Author - Catriona Jackson
Close map

Similar Restaurants

Courgette

Courgette

15.5/20

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Reader rating (1)

Comments

Be the first to comment.

Make a comment

You are logged in as [Logout]

All information entered below may be published.

Error: Please enter your screen name.

Error: Your Screen Name must be less than 255 characters.

Error: Your Location must be less than 255 characters.

Error: Please enter your comment.

Error: Your Message must be less than 300 words.

Post to

You need to have read and accepted the Conditions of Use.

Thank you

Your comment has been submitted for approval.

Comments are moderated and are generally published if they are on-topic and not abusive.

Most viewed restaurants

View all

You can also view recent reviews for:

Most viewed restaurants in Sydney

View all

You can also view recent reviews for:

Most viewed restaurants in Melbourne

View all

You can also view recent reviews for:

Most viewed restaurants in Brisbane

View all

You can also view recent reviews for:

Most viewed restaurants in Canberra

View all

You can also view recent reviews for:

Festive feasting

Turkey, ham, seafood, pudding: these recipes have got you covered.