I LIKE steaks and Led Zeppelin.
And in 2018 that makes me a cultural footnote.
At the age of 43 I should really be having a mid-life crisis, wearing hot pants with “smashed avocado” on the front and “non-binary” on the back.
But I like to wallow in cholesterol and listen to Kashmir.
That’s where The Flying Scotsman comes in.
On an anonymous Tuesday night my mate Banner and I were looking for a prehistoric meal to reaffirm our role in society.
The Scotsman was teeming with hi-vis and the din of people catching up for a cheeky, mid-week jar.
The menu contained the usual suspects: burgers, pizzas, share plates and a range of mains, including the interminable chicken parmigiana.
But we wanted to feel like cavemen head-butting each other, so Banner ordered the sirloin steak with mash and veggies ($36) and I went for the rump steak-and-a-pint special with chips ($22).
The pub interior was semi-plush and there was a cosmopolitan range of beers and spirits on offer, but the Scotsman still has the air of an old-time saloon.
In fact it was allegedly a hangout for feisty pollie Alannah MacTiernan, and I could imagine her at the bar, clutching a large Jameson’s, with a six-shooter strapped to her blouse.
It wasn’t long before the waiter was back with our steaks and Banner, a former chef, was impressed.
“The sirloin was ordered rare and came out beautifully charred, propped upon a velvety whipped mash surrounded by nicely seasoned buttery carrots and asparagus spears,” he said.
“The generous portion of peppercorn sauce was textbook with a well-balanced background of red wine.
“You could spend the whole night wandering around exotic food haunts looking for ubergastro-deliverance but sometimes all you need is a steak passed over a pub counter.”
I normally don’t order rump steak as I’m inevitably disappointed, but the chef worked wonders with this cheap cut.
It was cooked to medium as ordered and the criss-cross chargrill really brought out the primal flavours of this juicy 300gm slab.
The rich mushroom sauce was dotted with slices of fungi and tasted authentic (unlike those ghastly packet sauces that are thickened with cornflour) and the chunky chips were perfect for mopping up the residue.
So for a brief 30 minutes we were in our element—the baffling modern world a distant blur—as we rearranged the cosmos and nudged the fulcrum back in our favour.
The Flying Scotsman—for all your atavistic needs.
by STEPHEN POLLOCK
The Flying Scotsman
639 Beaufort Street, Mt Lawley