Replacing what was Tosolini’s in Civic is newly opened Social & Co. The inside looks like a relaxed spacious bistro area with a large bar. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you can see all food options in the one menu. The cuisine is a mix of Mediterranean/Italian with items like lamb souvlaki skewers, a hummus plate, zucchini fritters, roasted tomato and harissa soup, a cod burger and pizza.
Pizzas are made fresh before being baked in a wood fired pizza oven.
I didn’t get to try the pizza but it did look good as I watched the chef knead, toss and add toppings to the pizza.
My friend and I met up to try it out for lunch. We were greeted at the door and allowed to pick a table. Menus were brought out to us as well as tap water. The menu was split into all day / sit at the bar food, meat designed to share, pizza, and some regular mains. I asked our waiter how big the portions were to make my decision. Our meals were slow coming out – about a half hour wait but it may have to do with what we ordered. I had the breaded veal cutlet ($26) with roasted truss tomatoes and fries. The veal cutlet was a massive slab of meat on the bone, and probably why it took so long to cook. Super thick but easy to cut through with the sharp knife provided. The meat wasn’t as tender as I would have liked but it was filling. I also felt like it was missing something like an accompanying sauce as I found the meat on its own to be too dense and lacking that extra flavour. The warm roasted tomatoes were bursting with juiciness when popped so I learnt to mix the natural juices with each mouthful of veal.
My friend ordered the slow cooked lamb shoulder with creamy hummus, tabouli, crispy kale and wood fired flat bread ($26). It was a smaller portion than expected but very tender. I’m not sure if he was full after it though!
I headed back to try out the breakfast menu one morning. The pepe saya buttermilk pancakes ($17) were calling out my name. Apart from me, there was only one other person in the entire eatery waiting on breakfast so I thought it was strange that it took 25 minutes to arrive. Three pancakes arrived topped with roasted apple and rhubarb, cinnamon maple syrup and dusted in icing sugar. I was disappointed that the underside of the pancakes were a little burnt. I also found that there wasn’t enough topping to pancake ratio and although the maple syrup got soaked into the pancakes, there was nothing else to eat the pancakes with after I had finished eating the toppings. Definitely needs ice cream and more topping to balance it out.
Only after I received my pancakes, did I hear the coffee machine turn on to make my soy mocha ($4.50). It wasn’t bad and quite creamy but it really should have been provided first.
I do like the space and the brightness of the eatery. Friday drinks are being promoted with the eatery being a place to ‘get social’. I did see a wine list and I’m assuming they also go cocktails and hopefully mocktails. A drink with an antipasto platter sounds like a good idea after work one day. There are still some service issues to sort out as it is relatively new. The food didn’t blow my mind rather it was simple down to earth food.
Social & Co are located on the corner of London Circuit and East Row (near the bus interchange) at Bailey’s Corner near Guild and Hog’s Breath. Open seven days for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
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