Public House Petersham is a dog friendly and family friendly pub on Stanmore Road in Petersham. Nowadays for family birthdays we explore a different pub in Sydney and this one held some surprises!
It was Elliott birthday time and I'm completely loving this new family trend of having birthdays at a pub. It's so much easier and more comfortable to do it this way (speaking as the person who had to cook a lot of the food). I had read that Public House's food offering was solid so I booked it for the double birthday celebration for Mr NQN and his brother Manu. There's a small parking lot to the side as well as plenty of street parking right outside Public House which is located on the main street of Petersham. We take a seat at the reserved table in the covered courtyard beer garden. Everyone arrives soon after which is a nice surprise - with picnics people used to come whenever they wanted but with a booking they get themselves organised a bit better. When everyone arrives we go to make our order at the counter.
There's a couple of specials of the day including a Sunday roast and a four cheese pizza special. The menu has a mix of shareable starters, burgers, pasta, pizzas and sides and there's even an option for the dog mince for $8 for canine buddies. Araluen enquires about the special where kids eat free - for every main ordered, you can get a kid's pizza for free so that's the kids sorted. Staff are friendly and helpful.
There are quite a few tempting sounding pizzas available from classic to creative ones like a beef brisket pizza. We go for the Piggy Bits pizza with mortadella, sobrassada, garlic, mozzarella and pecorino. The pizza is a solid offering from a place that isn't a pizza specialist. I end up adding a bit of chilli oil to this to make it a bit spicier.
As for the kid's pizzas they enthusiastically demolish their kid's sized pizzas while Aura Lily being older had some of our pizza because the kids pizzas don't have any spices or herbs.
Our other main is the mushroom and halloumi burger on a soft bun with lettuce, capsicum, herb mayonnaise and a side of fries. There's a medium sized portobello mushroom and while the mushroom is a bit small for the size of the bun they make up for it with the halloumi which is very generously portioned (and let's face it, halloumi beats mushroom). The cheese is also perfectly cooked so that it is gooey and oozy in texture. There is quite a bit of tomato sauce on this burger (perhaps too much as you can see it spilling out above) and it is best eaten whole rather than cutting it in half (as we were sharing).
Normally a Sunday meat roast would raise no interest from the vegetarian and vegan Elliotts but now that Araluen eats meat it's the first thing she goes for. The Sunday roast is a stuffed porchetta with Brussels sprouts, carrots and crispy chat potatoes. I try some of Araluen's porchetta and it is very good with a crunchy crackling and soft, tender meat.
I also order the winter vegetable salad as I felt like eating salad especially on such a warm day. There's golden and purple roasted beetroot, fennel, rocket, orange, pickled onions and chopped smoked almonds with a marmalade dressing. It's tasty and very piquant but I would probably add a bit of feta to this to balance the sharpness but I would imagine this is made without cheese to make it a vegan offering.
Manu orders the vegetable lasagne and while I didn't try any, he enjoyed it but felt like there was too much cheese on top (no such thing haha and also it is called a "cheesy eggplant lasagne" on the menu).
The chips were a request for the table. Everyone loves the chips seasoned well with chicken salt and cooked perfectly golden and crispy.
There is one dessert on the menu, a chocolate cake but we have two birthdays cake for Manu and Mr NQN. There's no worrying about cakeage, we cut them using the knives at the table and serve them on serviettes and then without any fuss or drama we all head to our respective homes!
So tell me Dear Reader, do you agree that halloumi beats mushroom or do you feel otherwise? How do you celebrate family birthdays?
These meals were independently paid for.
292 Stanmore Rd, Petersham NSW 2049
Phone: (02) 8587 6400
Monday to Saturday 12 pm–12 am
Sunday 12–10 pm