After attending the Langtons classification tasting at Fed Square (where the Chris Ringland Shiraz put Grange, Hill of Grace, Runrig and Australis in their place), we were looking for something nearby to soak up the sizeable amount of quality alcohol we had consumed.
Tonka has been one of the most talked about restaurants in recent times given its a spin off the wildly successful Coda. Located at the end of Duckboard Pl, I would say that if it didn't have the Coda cachet, that this would be a sure fire dead zone for a higher end restuarant. But social media and word of mouth are a powerful thing, and Tonka has managed to align cheap rent with being a destinational restaurant.
|Not your typical fine dining surroundings...|
|Surprisingly this doorway leads to...|
|This (sorry for the picture quality)|
Wanting to counter the effects of too much heavy wine we went for the following:
|Heart of palm, cucumber, pickled ginger, mint|
|Chicken Biryani with sella rice, saffron and cassis|
|Rajasthani duck, cucumber, mint and buffalo milk curd|
|Avani's lamb curry with roasted coconut, black cardamom and white poppy seeds|
All in all, Tonka partially deserves the buzz. It's in an unusual location, the views are stunning, staff personable and high end Indian is a new market in Melbourne. However given that spice is an integral part of the cuisine, I would either expect that it is more balanced or that punters are warned of the heat that is coming their way.