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The Salisbury Hotel turns Hard Core
The local collaboration of the year is about to happen and we’re just a little bit excited.
If you live in Stanmore, chances are you have become a big fan of the amazing artisan pies by Stanmore Village’s resident pie maker – Stuart Clarke of Core. Whilst Core’s original shop front is now closed (and sent locals into a quiet panic) Stuart’s getting ready for the next chapter and it means we will enjoy even more of Core’s nostalgic style cooking.
It all started when Trish and Ged of Stanmore’s Salisbury Hotel took independent ownership of the pub earlier this year and are evolving it into a true community hub. First up, you’ll see a total re-vamp of the Salisbury’s kitchen – now managed by fellow local operator Core. “I’ve always said to Stu, your pies need my beer, so this feels like a natural move forward for both of us” exclaims Ged.
Core’s regular breakfast menu, including breakfast pies and rolls (yes that oozy free range egg, homemade sausage and Marrickville smoked bacon and house-made chutney) will still be available, Monday to Friday from 6am, whilst Saturday and Sunday you’ll be able to enjoy more of a brunch style menu, with the added bonus of the Farmhouse Bloody Mary.
As for lunch and dinner, there will be staples including the pies, plus the menu will showcase specials that will be featured based around the best produce Stuart can source that week “If I see something is looking great that week, you’ll see a special on the menu” advises Stuart. The plan is to introduce transparency in the menu “you’ll know where your food is from, how it’s made and you’ll enjoy the taste of the best quality produce that can be bought locally”.
“The sausages you’ll see as a staple, are home made using the best Bangalow bacon from Byron, our dairy will come from a herd in Picton, making our locally sourced coffee (from the Little Marionette) even better. You’ll find lamb ragu – that’s been braised for five hours with hand cut pasta and corned beef, boiled in house with Dutch cream potatoes, braised cabbage and parsley sauce. We’ll source our fruit and veg from Galluzzo Fruiterers, a third generation family run business in Glebe since 1934. It’s all about sourcing the best possible produce and cooking it with love.”
And those pies – some old favourites will be menu staples: The Woolly Back Rider – full of five hour braised lamb, tomato and rosemary; Steers and Beers – showing off chunky beef which will be paired up with different local craft beers and the Barn free – a free range chicken pie with creamy tarragon and white wine sauce.
And get ready for a few new comers including the “Harrisa Krishna” – a pie full of roasted eggplant , harrisa, chickpeas, silver beet and preserved lemon and the “Pie-rate” – a market fish with creamy white wine and dill.
What makes Stuart’s food so special? He told us “it’s all about the simple old school cooking methods, all butter, home made pastry, slow braised good quality meat and vegetables and a kitchen that cares.” It’s nostalgic cooking at it’s best.
In addition to the new menu and kitchen operation, the Salisbury Hotel has launched its boutique, pub style accommodation consisting of 20 rooms with shared bathrooms and facilities including a kitchen and dining area.
Blake and I are regulars at the Salisbury and at Core, so it’s a collaboration we’re really excited about. If you haven’t discovered these two authentic Inner West operators – now’s a good time!
By Blake and Annika
Image by Annika
Salisbury Hotel Stanmore: The Pub That Keeps On Truckin'
This pub and I have been on the same path for years. I used to frequent it when it was a run-down, beer stained locals' joint as a uni student. Back then there was a shed out the back where people would leave their kids on a Friday night to run riot and draw on the walls. I used to sit on my high horse thinking, " I would never leave my kids in there so I could go drinking." Of course now with hindsight, I think how quick we are to judge when we are childless. These days I'd leave my kids with the Manson family if it meant enjoying a parma in peace (I'm kidding... kind of).
Anyway, like me, the Salisbury Hotel has come of age, and now offers something that is family friendly with a non-judgey vibe. A pub you'd never feel guilty about bringing your kids to. Why? Because kids love this place too. It does something that not many pubs can do - cater to both the parents and the kids without selling one party short.
Why It Delivers The Goods
Well, you can't deny the sheer brilliance of the piece de resistance in the beer garden. The 1926 Dennis brewery truck owners Trish Larkin and Ged Dore found on Gumtree has been restored and turned into a communal table. Your kids are going to love climbing into this, and let's face it, you're going to love taking pics of them in it underneath the beautiful Chinese elm tree. Check out the tagged photos of this place on Instagram - it's 99% of the big red truck.
While the kids are happily playing, the grown-ups can enjoy one of the many local craft beers on tap like Young Henry's and 4 Pines.
On the menu you'll find the regular pub classics, think Schnitties, Beef and Guinness Pies, Steak Sandwiches and Burgers, but there's also a whole lot of sophisticated stuff that'll really elevate your pub experience - for instance the Baby Back Pork Ribs ($28) with chilli plum glaze, apple and fennel salad and roasted spuds. Or the Maple Miso Salmon ($27) with Asian slaw.
Kids On Board
For kids the menu is simple - read - effective. As Trish (a mum of 2 boys) explains, they set out to give the kids what they want so parents can relax and enjoy their meal too. You'll find the staples of cheese pizza, pasta, fish and chips and cheeseburgers there to delight kids from toddler to school age. Or if they're really adventurous, Trish recommends ordering from the share plate menu for a small but taste-explosive option. And of course, there's everyone's favourite dessert, ice-cream!
Just when you couldn't think this place could be more family-friendly I am informed about the nanny service they have on Monday and Friday nights (5pm-8pm). That's right, if the truck isn't enough of a babysitter, there is a qualified carer on these nights to take your kids into the special play area loft for craft, colouring and games. Monday night is a great night to go with the family as the pub does 2-4-1 meals, which is basically cheaper than you could cook for your family at home. Note the place gets super busy on Mondays, basically everyone with kids in Stanmore is here. I hear the childless couples prefer to go Tuesdays for the curry and long neck beer deal ($20) or Wednesdays for the drag bingo!
Follow their Facebook page to be up to date with all of the kid-friendly events. They just keep thinking of new ways to amuse your kids, for example on Good Friday there will be a petting zoo in the pub! I can't love this pub enough. I can see myself coming here as a grandma, no doubt they'll be doing un-ironic bingo for oldies by then
By: Alex Harmon, ellaslist
What do you get when an Irish Publican and Singaporean-Malay Chef tackle the challenge of transforming a historic local hotel into a classic, independently-run Australian pub tailored to the diverse community surrounding it?
You get the Salisbury Hotel in Stanmore — complete with a hearty new menu, open courtyard and nightly offerings. And one week out from opening, it’s already shaping up to be just what locals need to avoid tapping their Opals for a night out in Newtown.
Wearing a smile as he navigates the construction site of his new kitchen, Chef Ridz is beaming with pride. “I feel like a child on Christmas Eve,” he says — “I helped design this kitchen, it’s a dream come true.”
The new kitchen at Stanmore’s historic Salisbury Hotel is spacious and homely by design, with a small set of windows opening out onto the large new beer garden where a 1926 Dennis brewery truck has been parked. Amid a new wave of culinary-chic hotels in the inner-west, it’s about as unpretentious as they come.
While his culinary career began in Singapore, Ridz has more than left his stamp on the local food scene since moving here in 2000 — manning the kitchens at Glebe's Le Petit Tarte and The Flying Fajita Sisters, as well as The Henson Park Hotel in Marrickville and The Trinity in Surry Hills.
Discussing the Salisbury’s new seasonal menu, Ridz laughs and insists he’s “not trying to reinvent the wheel. All the classics are there — a big Aussie Brewery Truck burger, schnitzel, Coopers beer-battered fish and chips, beef and guinness pie — we’re just making good, well-seasoned food,” Ridz says. “My goal is for locals to have smiling tummies when they’ve finished eating.”
Publican Trish Larkin’s focus on Stanmore’s community is immediately apparent when stepping into the Salisbury, with framed portraits of locals hanging along the walls with small plaques revealing where they had their first drink. Commenting on the pub’s makeover, one beer-drinking local tells me that “before the renovations, I hadn’t seen a young person here for ten years.”
But that’s all changed now, with a range of new nights inspired by Stanmore’s diverse and colourful community, including two-for-one dinners on Monday, Drag Bingo on Wednesday, and a stellar Salisbury Sunday showcasing a traditional feast and musical lineup of local talent.
“It’s a meeting place for all, young and old,” Larkin says. “We wanted to build a pub where you’d be happy to take your mam, grandad or children — a great place to meet for a drink and not fall over.”
Larkin, who was born in the Irish town of Waterford but moved to Australia twenty years ago, is clear about one thing — “it’s possible to modernise a classic. I do think it’s possible to recreate the feeling of an old village pub, especially when the building has been here since 1899. It’s fostering an openness and serving up good quality food, without trying to be something we’re not. That’s what we’ve done here.”
The numerous changes mightn’t take everyone’s immediate fancy, but Trish is confident there’s something for the whole family — and she would know. Having wrangled her partner, Gerard Dore, to help out, the pub has become a bit of a family project.
“He fancies himself a bit of a pub mechanic,” she laughs — “and the kids helped design our children’s menu.”
“I love Stanmore’s typical village feel, there are all the classic fixtures — a second generation barber, school, church, chemist and fish & chip shop. But there are also some great new businesses like Core Catering, Mule Cafe and Sixpenny.”