Thursday, May 14, 2009


What a surprise Rails was! As a long-term local, I have known this location through quite a few of its re-incarnations. Rails looked good, promised to be good, but as just another new local, didn't motivate me to visit until now (probably a year into its trade?).
Firstly, I wasn't expecting more than mediocre, even being a very optimistic person as a rule. Parking isn't the best, but after leaving the dark murky locale, peeking in to the well lit corner windows as I found the door, I was really excited. The space is modern, but not up itself. There is a great ceiling feature, a purple barrel light shade with radiating features making it quite a focal point of the room. Timber window frames, lots of windows (always good), timber floor, seats and plain but smart white placesettings.

As I waited for my group to arrive, the staff were attentive and switched on, and nice with it. At this stage, it should also be known that the chef Matthew De Luca was formerly at "The Watermark" in Balmoral..a place I had always meant to get to, but never quite did. How glad I am that Matthew has set up shop in my locality.

The menu promised much. Again, I was expecting an overpromise..I was nicely surprised. As we were a group of ex school friends, being female, it was more about the conversation than anything else in the universe at that straight to mains so I missed the opportunity for duck pancakes...always a favourite. But..I'm sure I will return soon.

I had a sensational Ocean Trout Fillet with a capsicum, spinach, potato and zucchini lasagne, poached asparagus, sea scallops and salse verde. It was $28 but was well worth it. (see photo above).

Another outstanding option was the Veal Osso Bucco pie with spinach, green beans, sugar snap peas served with truffle potato mash and dutch carrots for $26. Beautifully presented and delicious to-boot!

Other mains were the twice cooked Pork belly, and Lemon Thyme Roast Duck Breasts, but as I have had both PB and Duck in the last fortnight, I thought I'd pick the Fish option. Others at our table enjoyed the Morrocan Crusted WA Lamb, and the Grain Fed Rib Eye..with suitably yummy and complex accompaniements. There was also a North Qld King Prawn Risotto on offer, but the fish came calling and I had to comply.

Again, due to the talkfest that ensued, dessert was not on the menu tonight, but check out the website to see what we COULD have had.

A great feature of this restaurant is that there is a reasonable kids menu, and on Tuesday nights after 6pm, kids eat free with each main meal purchased. Really, its a hidden gem in our locale and should be supported at all costs! So, if you have any special occasions coming up, you should at least give RAILS a try. Please make sure you book.

On a final note, the staff really were easy going and never made us feel we were a bother..even though they had to almost put the lights out to make us leave! Hapi Eating!


  1. What a find HB! I'd always thought the place looked a bit sleazy due to its being right next door to the pokies lounge and the bottle shop but it looks like the atmosphere has changed. Looking forward to checking out the rest of the menu!

  2. My reservations has always been a less than nice pub. However, the restaurant is really worthwhile. You step inside and feel like you are somewhere else. Even the view out of the window looks a little more interesting than "just the station" for some reason because the interior is modern and nice. Give it a go. I'll definitely go back again.

  3. The pie looks wonderful alongside the truffled mash. If that dish doesn't say "winter" I don't know what does! Thanks for the review :)

  4. When I saw your photos, I suggested we hold Jenny's birthday lunch there but alas they don't do lunch on the weekends! The food sounds and looks good! :*(

  5. Why don't you do a Tuesday night when the kids eat free?