Peppercorn Restaurant moved to Roseville from Drummoyne where it originally started thirty years ago by owners Chef Dennis Riley and Maitre De Maureen Riley. We booked our reservation for a Saturday evening (tel: (02) 9904 7004) and there was no trouble fitting us in.
The restaurant layout is simple, bordering on stark with little embellishment to the basic structure of the small shopfront. So I was a little apprehensive about the “modern French cuisine” moniker that it had been given when we entered the place. As we were there on a weekend, the restaurant was quite noisy. We were a group of six and I could see there was another group of six and a group of ten already seated along with a scattering of couples at the remaining tables. So getting us fed promptly and at a high standard was going to be a challenge for any restaurateur. However, I am pleased to say this was a challenge that Peppercorn lived up to.
The menu is simple, although there are options for the vegetarian or gluten free eater. The blackboard special was a Guinness and Beef Pie which I opted for as the main course and selected the scallops with button mushrooms in a cream and cheese sauce to start. The food was excellent. The scallops were perfectly cooked and the accompanying sauce was delicious.
When the Guinness and Beef pie arrived, visually it looked a little on the small side. Once I tucked-in to the chunks of beef in its rich sauce I was glad that the pie was the size presented. The meat was good quality beef and the sauce was well balanced top with a beautiful pie crust. Served with a simple side of mash potato and green beans, this was a demonstrating in reductive modern cuisine.
Entrées are priced under twenty dollars and most mains runs around $33, so a two course meal with coffee is going to run around $60 per head which, although not cheap, was well worth it for the quality of the meal.
Service I found to be straightforward and friendly. The young lady that took our order made no mistakes and served each meal in a timely and efficient manner. I was impressed with the quality of the meals and presentation, particularly as I could imagine the chef was under great pressure getting the food out with two other groups eating in front of us.
I’d like to see Peppercorn develop the atmosphere of their restaurant a bit more. The surroundings were not minimalist, just very simple bordering on plain. But at the end of the day, at a restaurant like Peppercorn, it’s the food that matters and the food was very good.