Dining at one restaurant was getting to be a bit of a joke for us. First there was the strange conversation while booking, then when we turned up, they told us that they were closed for the night. Giving them another chance as we heard that the food was good, we rebooked again with the same daffy person only to receive a phone call a few hours before we were to dine telling us that they weren't actually going to be open that night. Hey at least they called this time...
That left us with dinner plans but no restaurant to eat at. This usually isn't a problem but it was a Monday night and we had just emerged from a movie. Scrambling quickly with our phones, we looked for a restaurant that was suitable. It needed to be open obviously, nearish and ideally one that I hadn't visited before so that I could write about it. Finally we came across Mr Moustache in Bondi Beach. Belinda rang and made a booking.
Mr Moustache is located on Hall Street in Bondi. It's lightly drizzling this evening. We park nearby (there are advantages to going out on a Monday night) and walk up and down Hall Street. We finally locate them - the signage is subtle and you would mistake it for a nearby rib joint.
We take a seat at the banquettes (beware air conditioning drips!) and take a look at the menu. It's a cute menu with just two pages for food but plenty of Mezcal and drinks. It is said to be primarily a Mezcal bar with food options and the bar manager is Mike Tomasic (ex Wild Rover). It is a relatively small place tucked away just behind A Tavola with some banquette seating, a couple of bar tables and some outside tables.
We are pleasantly surprised with the mild, creamy gaucamole and the beetroot and corn chips. They hit the spot and we would have ordered another serve if we didn't already have a lot of food coming. The beetroot chips are particularly good with the guacamole.
Watermelon salad $10
Cheryl loves the watermelon salad so much that she orders another serve. It's a slice of watermelon that you cut up yourself and it is topped with jamon serrano, green pesto, cotija cheese and strands of watercress rocket. It's refreshingly savoury and ideal for this warm, rainy evening.
Duck Tostada $12
The duck tostada has soft cooked lightly spicy shredded duck, refried beans, red onion and sour cream and the corn chip base remains crunchy.
Tuna Tostada $12
Out of the two tostadas I preferred the clean flavours of the raw tuna and avocado which gave the crunchy base a creamy element.
Tortita Ahogada $13
There's always a first time for something and this is the first time I've ever been given a latex glove to eat something. The glove is for the tortita ahogada which is a soft braised pork sandwich bathed in an Arbol chilli sauce which they pour on top at the table. We were warned twice that this is a spicy dish and they were right.
"WHOA mama!!" Cheryl exclaims. It's very saucy, spicy and did I mention spicy? We take some sips of water but overall we're fine. We watch as the man next to us puts on a brave face although his eyes are watering while another gentleman indicates that he finds it way too spicy by knocking back much water.
Taco Baja $6 each
Fish tacos are ever present on menus nowadays. These are fine although I would have loved them more golden and crunchy while these are quite pale and lacking a lot of crunch.
Taco Conchinita $6 each
The conchinita taco is filled with a braised spiced pork, pickled red onion and habanero salsa. The spices used in the pork reminds me of curry spices. By now we realise that we've ordered a bit too much.
Taco Vampiro $7 each
Cheryl's choice was the taco vampiro which was a flat toasted corn tortilla, refried beans, spicy chorizo, cactus salad and panela cheese. Cheryl remarks that it is a bit like eating a piece of vegetarian pizza and she's not wrong. The chorizo is cut into tiny pieces so that you don't really even taste it.
The warm corn salad is served in a tall glass and is mixed with mayonnaise, fresco cheese and chilli. There are two types of corn in it, a regular yellow sweetcorn and a large white corn and it reminds Belinda and me of the Ricos Elotes corn stand in Dallas, Texas.
The bananas are said to be plantains although they taste like regular bananas. Served with a goat's milk cajeta and a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream, they're simple, sweet and comforting.
Guava Creme Brulee $9
The guava lends the creme brulee a slight graininess and it's a very sweet dessert. Perhaps too sweet for us but ideal for sweet tooths.
So tell me Dear Reader, do you find it a challenge to find places to eat out on Sundays and Mondays? And have you ever had to don a latex glove to eat something?
This meal was independently paid for.
61-79 Hall Street, Bondi Beach
Tel: +61 (02) 9300 8892 Monday - Friday 5:00 p.m — 11:00 p.m.
Saturday 12:00 noon — 11:00 p.m.
Sunday 12:00 noon — 10:00 p.m.