I broke one of my fundamental eating out rules today – I went to a cafe that does not have its menu on its website. Nomada is a new tapas restaurant on Westgarth St where Hammer and Tong and Brix were. As it has received the Boredsheet hype I thought I would get in before the impact of that makes it difficult. I must be getting soft.
A friend who loves Anada and things Spanish joined me. We wanted to try a variety of the smaller dishes on the menu, and ordered: scrambled eggs with toast; blue eye fish and fennel croquettes; a deep fried bullhorn pepper filled with melted cheese; cherry tomatoes; and churros.
We liked the look of the interior. It is elegant and less cluttered than it was when it was Hammer and Tong. We ordered coffees that were disappointing – bitter, weak and underwhelming. We were satisfied with the savoury food, particularly the croquettes. The pepper was excellent with lime mayonnaise.
Then we ordered the churros to finish, and were again disappointed. They were crisp on the outside but still a bit soft and doughy on the inside. They may be new, and I may have visited too soon, as I usually give places a couple of weeks to get settled, but at a Spanish place the churros should be perfect.
The northern end of Brunswick St is struggling to recover from the closure of Palookaville and last year’s fatal fire. A new pizza place has finally replaced the former but several empty buildings give the strip an unloved vibe. As one of the most northerly outposts of Fitzroy cafe society, Nomada stands alone and is a destination that is consciously chosen rather than spontaneously found.
My first experience of Nomada was acceptable but not inspiring. I’d consider returning, but only if I heard that the coffee had improved and the menu was available online so at some point in the future I can easily see if it has changed so I can try some new dishes.