Location of choice, Smolt.
Often misconceived as being uber-expensive (it does look very Sweedish) but not so... it is a great spot to drink a nice drop, eat a nice, and mostly reasonably priced, meal while people watching through the wall to ceiling glass windows. If you are immature like us, try guessing what kind of underwear the local women are (or aren't) wearing. It's a hilarious yet childish way to pass the time for the young at heart.
There we three of us, myself, Matt and Tom and we are all hospo peeps. I can't give an objective review, as we know the waiters (it's a very small town), so they were really nice to us. Although as we think the staff are really nice people in general, I am sure they would be nice to you too.
Smolt has been on the scene for a few years now, but it hasn't aged a day. It is connected to the Tassal salmon shop next door, but not a salmon-themed restaurant (thank goodness for that), and owned by the Tassal brand.
The menu ranges from small dishes to share to larger mains, with a strong Spanish and Italian influence. Think pizza and pasta, but in a good way. We went for the sharing option, and here is a selection of what we ate:
Gorgonzola arancini with salsa rosa $3.8 each
Port terrine with apple and celery relish and ciabatta $16.40
Tasmanian Salmon (farmed) gravalax with horseradish cream $9.6
Honestly I don't remember exactly what was on this pizza, the boys ordered it when I was too busy laughing at some half dressed floozy stumbling past the window in shoes she couldn't walk in. Goats cheese and rosemary spring to mind, and it was probably $19.9
The food was lovely, but I would say that because I'd had three pints before we got there and a glass of wine while we were waiting for our table and at that point I would have eaten anything.
It was a busy night, and we were a walk-in, only waiting about 15-20 minutes for a table, which was great. The floor plan is well laid out, more formal dining in the back of the restaurant, and more relaxed seating in the front. Those stools on the left... I want one. Actually, I want three. They're lovely, I never through I would be in love with a seat..but there you go. I really am getting old.
Aesop hand soap in the bathrooms could be considered a plus or a minus depending on your love of geranium and the facilities are pretty flash. Although if seated up front you have to parade yourself past all other diners to get there - but it's a good opportunity to peep into the open kitchen and see what the chefs are plating up on the way past.
The crew at Smolt do what they do with finesse, but without pretention. It's easy going, and you get what you pay for, and then some, with the quality fittings, cutlery, crockery and glassware. Although, whatever beverage you order..same glass. And I like that. So eat here. Just don't put your elbow in the terrine like I did. That means it is time to go home.
2 Salamance Square Hobart (next to the TasSal shop)
(03) 6224 2554
Open 7 days a week, 8.30 am with the kitchen open until 10pm. Breakfast is on offer on the weekend until 11.45.