Royal Croquet Club Melbourne (RCC)

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Birrarung Marr

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Birrarung Marr

The Royal Croquet Club (RCC) is a pop up festival comprising food, beverages, a bit of sport and music. What’s croquet again? You know that game the queen of hearts plays in Alice in wonderland with the live flamingos as mallets and cute little hedgehogs as balls. Well it’s that game but less imaginative, it’s a nice casual summer sport. But is RCC really all about croquet? Not to my hungry tums it wasn’t, it was all about delicious food and summer beverages.

Royal Croquet Club - Melbourne

Royal Croquet Club – Melbourne

There were jugs of Pimms everywhere. Pimms with dry and fresh fruit is my fave. The Pimms was flowing and the sun was shining and that is what summer is all about. There are benches and seats around to sit or you can find a spot on the lawn.

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Mr Claws' spicy lobster roll

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Mr Claws’ spicy lobster roll

Our first stop was Mr Claws. We had the chunky spicy lobster roll, which was a toasted brioche bun (oh so buttery) with cold chunky bits of lobster mixed in sriracha chilli mayo with spring onions to garnish. Loved it! You could probably eat it in three bites, or even two depending on your bite size, but each bite was delightful. I wanted to go back and get one of each flavour, they also had miso wasabi and the classic buttermilk roll available.

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Miss Chu's vegetarian hanoi spring rolls

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Miss Chu’s vegetarian hanoi spring rolls

Second we tried Miss Chu’s crispy vegetarian Hanoi spring rolls. The outside of the spring roll looked like a wispy net of pastry, which was crispy and crumbly. It was nice and the spring rolls absorbed the nouc cham dipping sauce really well. I usually like my Hanoi spring rolls with meat but these were nice too.

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - D.O.C's lamb skewers w sea salt

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – D.O.C’s lamb skewers w sea salt

After that no meat special we ordered some lamb skewers with sea salt from D.O.C . They were simple and delicious. It was small pieces of lamb on a skewer, which were cooked to perfection. They were juicy and tender and completely delish. I liked that they were mini pieces along the skewer, it made it easy to eat.

I saw people with the lamb chops on potato salad from Meatmother, which looked amazing. I had total food envy but had to decline because I was already feeling too full. I hate when that happens. That’s okay I’ll just have to make another visit. They also had a St. Ali caravan serving coffees and stuff.

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Gelato Messina's Black Forrest Bisque

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Gelato Messina’s Black Forrest Bisque

Gelato Messina had an international soup kitchen, a very creative concept. The gelato was served in little soup tins. So adorable! And not to mention delicious!

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Black Forrest Bisque - Spoonful of delish

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Black Forrest Bisque – Spoonful of delish

We tried the black forrest bisque, which was chocolate fondant gelato, cherry jam, kirsch (brandy) cream and kirsch soaked sponge. The chocolate was rich and indulgent. I don’t usually eat soup in summer, but this is the exception. Frozen soup is a really cool idea.

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne - Gelato Messina's Faux Pho

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne – Gelato Messina’s Faux Pho

My first thought when I heard there was pho gelato I mistakenly thought that it was gelato that tastes like pho (beef broth soup) and that would be pretty rank. But I had it all wrong. The gelato was soup inspired. For example, the faux pho (love the name) had Asian inspired flavours. It had salted coconut sorbet, kaffir lime marshmallow, lychee coconut cream and a chilli cashew crunch. They were exciting little pots of deliciousness. Ahh it all makes sense. It was amazing!

RCC is a great concept combining sport, music, drinks and food. All the things you want to be doing with your friends during summer in one place. It’s a fun place to hang after work or on the weekend this summer. It’s open up until the end of Jan so grab your mates and pop by.

I heart the Royal Croquet Club!

Olives x

Royal Croquet Club Melbourne
Address: Birrarung Marr (behind Fed square)
Event Dates: Friday 16th January 2015 – Sunday 1st February 2015
Trading Hours: Mon-Thu: 4pm-11pm, Fri: 4pm-1am, Sat: 12pm-1am, Sun: 12pm-11pm

Extended Trading hours for the Australia day Long Weekend & Closing Weekend:
Sunday 25th: 12pm – 12am
Monday 26th: 12pm – 12am
Closing Night Sunday 1st Feb: 12pm – 12am

Rue & Co Melbourne Pop-Up

Rue & Co - Melbourne Pop-Up.

Rue & Co – Melbourne Pop-Up.

We were wondering around for a place to eat for dinner and saw some astro-turf and bright lights, which captured our interest. We walked over and had inadvertently stumbled upon a Melbourne pop-up on Collins street. Surprise! Awesome food. It was great, they had three shipping containers turned into food stalls and heated seating areas. Eating, seating and heating, exactly what I wanted on this cold winters night.

Rue & Co - Melbourne Pop-Up.

Rue & Co – Melbourne Pop-Up (Kong, Jimmy Grants & St Ali)

Just when I thought it couldn’t get better, it got better. We were surrounded by some amazing artwork. There was a giant portrait of a woman on the wall and a digital installation projected on the other wall with a range of moving images. My fave part of the installation was the diamonds floating across the screen, they sort of moved like hot air balloons floating in the sky.

Rue & Co - Melbourne Pop-Up - St Ali beef burger.

Rue & Co – Melbourne Pop-Up – St Ali beef burger.

There were three stalls. One was Salvatore Malatesta’s St Ali where you can get some amazing burgers. They serve yummy breakfast burgers in the morning and other delicious burgers during the day and night. They also serve quality coffee and some cheeky desserts. Delicious giant cookies yum! I had the beef burger with melted cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles and special sauce. It was classic and delicious. They had the mushroom trip burger with a pickled wild mushroom for the vegos, which sounded yum too.

Rue & Co - Melbourne Pop-Up - Jimmy Grants souva and chips.

Rue & Co – Melbourne Pop-Up – Jimmy Grants souva and chips.

The middle stall was George Calombaris’ Jimmy Grants. They had the Mr Papadopoulos (which is the lamb souva w chips mustard aioli, onions & parsley). The meat just falls apart, the bread is soft and fluffy and the chips are already in the souva. Love it. And the Homer, which is the veg option, has tasty falafels, greek yoghurt and helenic slaw. They also had some salads (the famous grain salad), jimmys dimmys (dim sims) and their chips with feta, garlic oil and oregano yum!!

Rue & Co - Melbourne Pop-Up - Kong Korean honey & garlic chicken wings.

Rue & Co – Melbourne Pop-Up – Kong Korean honey & garlic chicken wings.

The third stall was Chris Lucas’ Kong which had Korean chicken wings, steamed buns and some roti wraps. So many yummy things to choose from. I tried the chicken wings w honey, garlic and sesame seeds which was nice, they had spicy ones too. They had pork steamed buns and tofu ones that looked delicious. They were those open steamed buns, Gua Baos. They also had some roti wraps, which I want to go back and try. Pulled pork, slaw, kim chi, siracha mayo all rolled in a roti wrap. Sounds delish.

It was mostly exciting because I didn’t know the pop-up was there. I must have missed the memo but I’m glad I did because just finding this place accidentally gave it all the more charm. We had some restaurant ideas in mind but hadn’t decided on where to eat. We naively wondered right into the adventure we were looking for.  This pop-up came out of nowhere; I guess that’s what they do best. It was great! Sometimes when you are wondering through life, something unexpected throws all your ideas out the window and presents to you exactly what you are looking for.  If something great comes your way, don’t be scared to change your plans.

I heart Rue & Co!

Olives x

Rue & Co Pop-Up
Address: 80 Collins Street, Melbourne
Trading Hours: Open until 10pm daily (I think they open at 11am)