by Stephanie Williams
Years ago I travelled through Morocco and there’s one dish that still haunts my memory. It was a smoky evening in the Djemaa El Fna, Marrakech’s main square, and I found a very busy but non-descript stall serving fish with a seemingly simple fresh, cold tomato sauce.
It was so good I went back the next night and practically drank the sauce. Ever since, when I see a Moroccan cookbook I scour the pages to find how I can recreate that sauce. And I can’t. I had written it off as a moment in time – perhaps being on the road made it taste better than it was. I certainly wasn’t expecting to find it in Hobart.
Frank is on the ground floor level of the Marine Board Building on the waterfront, and apart from a small sign and glimpses of light behind the reflective glass, you could miss it. The menu is modern Australian with South American influences – the tone is set as you walk in to scented wafts of char-grill in the air.
The menu is for sharing, so we order a selection of starters and main sizes. I ordered the pumpkin cakes as a starter and I was so pleasantly surprised when it came with a side of fresh tomato sauce. Could it be my elusive Moroccan one? I was so impressed when it came pretty close, so I ordered a second serve just to be sure. Local natural oysters matched beautifully with a Tassie sparkling, a glass of Kreglinger. Next up was chargrilled broccolini, cavolo nero and stracciatella with a garlic and anchovy dressing, which we had alongside the hanger steak served with chimichurri and salsa picante and a serve of the beef and lamb molé with green rice. It was a great combination of flavours and the rice helped to fill up the hungrier of the two of us.
The cocktail and wine list is interesting, with lots of local options and a few from the mainland and further afield. I can’t go past trying a glass of “tap wine” just to see what it’s like (spoiler alert, it’s the same as regular wine, delicious!) and there’s also a reasonable beer selection, local and afar.
With no room for dessert, we call time but I’m already planning my return, if only for the condiments. ■
Dining Out meals are always self-funded.
1 Franklin Wharf,