Last night, I met up with my good friends Kate and Chris for dinner. We decided to go to The Meatball Shop – a restaurant that had been recommended to us earlier in the week but had always been full (no reservations allowed, just a wait-list). Upon arriving at 8:00pm, we were informed that we would in fact, be waiting 1.5 hours for a table. That’s how busy the place is. In the spirit of ‘giving things a go’ and ‘being on holiday’ etc, we decided to wait. So wait we did.
And it was totally worth it.
The Meatball Shop works like this: Each person gets a laminated write-on menu and a marker. Pretty much all the menu items are customisable and all you have to do is tick what combination of meatballs and sides etc you want. The menu consists of 5 kinds of meatballs – classic beef (Creekstone all natural beef ground with prosciutto, herbs and fresh ricotta – these aren’t just any meatballs), spicy pork, chicken, vegetable or the daily special (ours was lamb). You choose which meatballs you want, which sauce you want to accompany them, and whether you’d like them in a sandwich, or ‘naked’ (ie. on their own, with sauce and some foccacia), or if you want them in salad or soup. If that’s too confusing, check the menu out here.
I chose the naked classic beef meatballs with parmesan cream as my sauce (US$7.00). I also got the roast vegetable side of the day (carrots with walnuts and prunes) and the mashed potato side (US$4.00 each). Everything was delicious. The meatballs were fantastic and flavourful and not stodgy at all. The sauce was cheesy and creamy and plentiful. The mashed potatoes had skin in them and were the perfect amount of buttery and salty. As Isaac had already eaten, he just had a snack of two of the ‘sliders’ – one meatball with sauce of your choice in a bun – basically like a mini hamburger (US$3.00 each). He declared them ‘delish’. His snack was also washed down with the lemonade of the day (mint) which was pronounced the drink of the week.
Desserts are limited to ice cream sandwiches (US$4.00), and floats. The ice cream is made in-house and you can choose your combination of cookie and ice cream flavours to create your sandwich. I went with chocolate chip cookies and caramel ice cream, Isaac went with ginger snap cookies and espresso ice cream, James went with peanut butter cookies and chocolate ice cream and Kate and Chris decided to be wimps and share a ginger snap and brownie cookie with vanilla ice cream combo. WIMPS.
On top of the fact that the place was warm, and the food and drinks were great (and relatively inexpensive), special mention must be made to our waitress – the friendliest waitress ever. We were never felt pressured to leave (despite the ever-hovering list of people waiting for a table) and were checked on a couple of times but not in an overbearing way. She was awesome.
I will go back there. Mark my words, I will.
PS. Hi Helen! Kate also says Hi.