Cinnamon and Cherry, Franklin + Institut Polaire, Hobart
by Stephanie Williams
For my little family, weekends often involve a short drive somewhere for a meal – bonus points if the destination is near a park and offers a main street or market to explore. After hearing about Cinnamon & Cherry (3416 Huon Hwy, Franklin) being an excellent option for Turkish food, we had to pay a visit. Husband and wife team, Marcus and Hande, opened the cafe in the heart of Franklin in 2018 – with Tasmanian Marcus in the kitchen and Turkish Hande front of house. The space is light and bright with large timber tables, gorgeous vases of dried flowers and botanic drawings on the walls. Cabinets filled with pastries, meze, desserts and sweet treats span the whole width of the room, with a fresh, white-tiled open kitchen behind. We chose two mains – a chicken and a lamb plate with rice, yoghurt and salad ($19 each). Both were quickly snapped up, alongside spinach and fetta borek ($15) and lamb borek with garlic yogurt and paprika butter ($15), both served with salad and pretty edible flowers. The kids enjoy the loaves of freshly baked, still warm Turkish bread and limonetta sodas ($6), “the best drink ever Mum!” according to my eldest. I finish with a coffee and a crunchy and light hazelnut and chocolate tart, my best on ground for the wholly delicious lunch.
Institut Polaire, Hobart
Sometimes you just want (need!) a really good cocktail, prepared by an expert. In Hobart, the go-to is Institut Polaire (1/7 Murray Street, Hobart) – partly because of the cocktail list, but, increasingly because of the beautiful menu. On this occasion, my friend ordered the Antarctic Dry Martini ($25, “the best in town” I’m told) and I started with a Gin Bramble ($20). Owner Louise Radman was on the floor tonight and we hand our tastebuds and ordering over to her. First up is the duck parfait bomba, with cherry ($15 each) and Hiramasa kingfish crudo, with fermented apple, kohlrabi and applewood smoked creme ($25). The bomba matches beautifully with my cocktail, a heavenly combination. I’m interested to try the wagyu tartare with local Shima wasabi ($25), featuring Tas Ag Co beef from near Deloraine, alongside the carrots with whey caramel, stracciatella and Hazelbrae hazelnuts ($18), a reminder of how lucky we are to have such quality produce on our island. By this stage my friend has moved onto a Bergamotto ($18) and I’m enjoying a glass of Domaine Simha Nature Pinot ($14) of which Louise’s husband, Nav Singh, is the winemaker. Final dishes of our tasting menu are the visually spectacular green handmade nettle ravioli with pecorino, mint and fava leaves ($33) and Strelleyfield duck breast with celeriac and cumquats ($38). Louise and Nav have created the perfect inner city wine bar, and recently recruited two new chefs – one ex-Hubert in Sydney and the other having worked around the world. With the combination of good chefs, good produce and good management, Institut Polaire is set for a strong summer ahead.