Close your eyes. Let your imagination take you to the deep south of the US of A. Now, channelling your best southern American, say ‘poor boy’ in that Southern drawl. What do you get?
I must confess being the sometimes uncultured human that I am, that up until very recently, I had no idea what a po’ boy was. I was delighted to discover that it was a sandwich with a rich history typically hailing from the streets of New Orleans. The story goes that the name was created in a New Orleans restaurant owned by Benny and Clovis Martin, former streetcar (tram) conductors. In 1929, during a four-month strike against the streetcar company, the Martin brothers kept the strikers nourished with free sandwiches. I would totally strike for free sandwiches, just sayin’.
The Martins’ restaurant workers jokingly referred to the strikers as “poor boys”, and soon the sandwiches themselves took on the name. In Louisiana dialect, this is naturally shortened to po’ boy. A po’ boy typically is served hot, and almost always consists of meat or fried seafood, on baguette-like New Orleans french bread.
If you’d like some more New Orleans goodness, you can find the recipe for Chicken & Mushroom Gumbo here.
After this little history and culture lesson, naturally I practiced my best Louisiana accent for the next few minutes (hot doggie, I’ll have another po’boy ma’am). But moving on.
The good news is that the Dove & Olive, nestled in the leafy streets of Surry Hills, is providing the people with po’boys every Tuesday – you don’t even have to strike to get them! With summer in the great Southern land in full swing, the pub is offering daily specials. Tuesday is po’boy day, and there are four options on special to enrich the meal times of the Surry Hills folk.
The po’boys on offer include Lobster, Fried Cajun Shrimp, Peri Peri chicken and Pulled Pork (all $9.90). I was lucky enough to sample all four flavours. While I am generally a chicken gal, I enjoyed the pulled pork immensely, and the good news is that the roll containing smoky pulled pork, pickled slaw, rocket, tomatoes and aioli is on the menu all week for $12.50 as well as on Tuesday’s specials board.
If you want that delicious fried goodness, the crunchy cajun shrimp po’boy awaits with a bed of house made coleslaw, American mustard aioli and rocket.
Half serves of the po’ boy specials
If you’re feeling a little less Yankee doodle and a little more traditional, there are a few festive specials on the board for you to get you prepped for the silly season. Christmas is pretty much the season of not only breaking diets but smashing them into little pieces, and a time of year where it’s acceptable to eat turkey and ham for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ahh Christmas; my love.
I do love a baked dinner, but it is one of those meals that I couldn’t be bothered/wouldn’t be super confident taking on myself. Too many elements to contend with, too little time! I’ll just stick to the baked sweet goods, thank you.
The Dove and Olive have a honey glazed ham ($22) on offer for people like me that just want someone else to prepare a baked dinner for them.
It has all the trimmings; dutch carrots (my first purple carrot, woo!), mixed beans, sugar snaps, chat potatoes, gravy and some sweet apple butter to contrast the salty goodness of the triple smoked honey glazed ham. Is there a more beautiful phrase than “triple smoked honey glazed ham?” I think not.
I am of the opinion that you don’t make friends with salad, but this salad is so friendly that it is probably going to replace you in your group of friends. While ham or turkey is like a traditional white Christmas dinner, seafood is a big part of the Aussie lunch – and the poached lobster and prawn salad ($22) fits that category. Combining the seafood, rockmelon, cherry tomatoes, snow peas, avocado, corn and mixed organic leaves with a thousand island dressing; it is summer in a salad. My only criticism would be that it was maybe a little too overdressed, thousand island is a pretty punchy flavour and maybe took over a little too much in this case.
Sweet potato wedges ($10) are always a hit; the perfect thing to snack on all the while pretending it’s okay to indulge because they are vegetables after all!
It might just be the English blood in me, but as soon as summer hits and it is afternoon, it is probably Pimms O’clock. Santa’s Little Helper ($12.50) is a delicious summery concoction that is sure to refresh, containing Aperol, apricot liquor, Pimms (yay!), mint, lemon and cucumber.
It is the perfect combination to refresh on a balmy summer afternoon. There is also a sweeter option, The Midori Grinch ($9.50), containing midori, cointreau, vodka, lemon, pineapple and maraschino cherry which I’m assuming is a pretty good antedate for those grinchy types come Christmas.
The vibes of the pub are a definite winner. I am a little obsessed with fairy lights, so any venue that makes liberal use of them is pretty great in my opinion. It’s all about the ambience!
It’s not just the de-lightful (a pun from me to you, just because it’s Christmas) decorations that make the mood, it just has a laid-back, cheery vibe about it that I can’t pinpoint but that I immensely enjoyed. Some hardcore TGIF feels and Christmas cheer make for a good Friday evening.
Dove & Olive 156 Devonshire Street, Surry Hills NSW Phone: (02) 9699 6001 Web: www.doveandolive.com.au
I Ate My Way Through dined as guests of the Dove & Olive