I'd seen so many mentions of Green Beacon online that it was inevitable for me to try it and see what the fuss was about. I knew that Teneriffe was gaining reputation as a new dining hub but Marc and I had never been so it was as good of a reason as any to visit. On the way there, Marc quizzed me about what kind of food was on offer. I really wasn't sure because for once, I hadn't researched the menu. I knew that they supplied vast amounts of beer so I deduced that it would be pub fare.
We found Green Beacon as an isolated warehouse aware from other restaurants and pubs. I later asked Marc if he thought they made the beer of premise and he looked at me like I was utterly stupid: "didn't you see the big vats right there in the room?" So there you go... Green Beacon Brewery is actually a brewery. There are long tables for people to sit at but most of the action is at the huge bar where people are chatting, nibbling and sipping from beers on tap.
The food on offer is mostly share plates of small things that go with beer. There are some larger portioned items for those who want sustenance but we stuck to the recommended beer snacks. As well as the standard offerings of nuts, breads and cured meat, Green Beacon also offers a variety of fresh seafood.
We opted for some bread and butter, a trio of Australian salami and a small serve of fresh prawns. When our food arrived, I was reminded of a picnic spread.
Without being huge experts of boutique beer, we randomly chose a couple off the menu. Mine was described as 'malty' but I found it to have a strong honey/floral tang. Marc's was much more bitter and robust.
One look at our selection in entirity confirmed to me that this was very much a snack stop and we would have to go somewhere us to get filled up. I suppose the idea is to mostly drink and have the occasional bite in between long periods of interesting conversation. Marc and I are too familiar to have interesting conversation and in any case, our appetites dictate that our primary focus is always on wolfing down food.
Bread and butter
The first I tried was the bread and butter. The bread (sourced from Choquette in New Farm) was soft and chewy with a strong crust.
Pepe saya cultured butter
I really loved this butter. It was richly yellow and had an almst cheese-like flavor to it. I like bread and butter anyway but a good quality butter just makes it that much more awesome.
Whole QLD king prawns
The prawns were huge and very fresh. Marc thought they were "good; just prawns" but I would like to dismiss his comment in favor of mine. Prawns are NOT 'just prawns'. There is a huge gap between good and terrible and not all vendors deliver good, fresh prawns. I sometimes have to drench prawns in tartare sauce for them to be edible but these were great with just a squeeze of lemon (note the nifty lemon wedge squeezing contraption). In my opinion, if a pub is to even consider offering fresh seafood, it needs to be top quality and Green Beacon delivers on that front. My only gripe is that there just weren't enough!
Finally... the trio of salami. This was interesting because so many Australians envision one thing when they think of 'salami' and that's the huge, circular, thinly sliced red meat with lots of white fatty dots. Hey, I like that stuff, especially on pizza or sandwiches, but it's good to see that there's more to it. The right-most variety was almost beef jerky-like in taste and texture. The middle one had a hint of honey sweetness that was just lovely.
We liked the food at Green Beacon. I got the distinct impression that the focus was on quality of produce and that the food was to be enjoyed in small quantities, highlighted with sips of their beer. The warehouse environment was different and fun. It was such a huge building but it still felt warm and cheerful. I can definitely see the appeal in stopping there after work for a drink. I don't see Green Beacon as being a dinner place. Lunch would be fine, and as a pitstop for drinks and snacks, it's perfect, but for dinner I need something more substantial.