Claypots Barbarossa

A Hardware Lane mainstay fit for any seafood lover.
Gary Brun
August 24, 2023

Overview

Located in Hardware Lane, Claypots Barbarossa brings the wild, party atmosphere of a European market town to the heart of the city. If you're looking for somewhere to sip rose while listening to a two-piece jazz duo and enjoying the last rays of sun as "Aperitovo Hour" sets in, then this is the place to visit. This place works for every occasion, be it a first date where lingering silence isn't something you need to fear, a long business lunch where loosening the belt a notch or two is a given, or a boisterous night out with your mates. Oh, and the food is damn good too.

The idea here is European fare with a heavy focus on the Spanish tapas tradition. Small plates include Kilpatrick oysters from Coffin Bay, king prawns with garlic chilli and coriander grilled in the shell, deliciously salty Spanish anchovies with caramelised onions on toast and grilled sardines just waiting to be peeled off their bones.

Mains are divided between seafood, pasta, meat and vegetarian — they can be either shared or taken as a solo meal. Seafood highlights include a Moroccan clay pot with couscous and mixed seafood in an eggplant sauce or seared swordfish with pink peppercorn.

Claypots in St Kilda

From the Claypots Barbarossa pasta menu, look no further than the pasta puttanesca with a vegetarian option available, or the spaghetti alle vongole with squid ink and fino.

The slow-cooked lamb with couscous is the pick from the grill, while vegetarians have an array of options to choose from, with the marinated grilled vegetables, the seared haloumi in minted oil and the field mushroom with dill the standout.

To round it all out, choose from the cheese or the dessert menu, with classics such as pannacotta and creme brûlée making an appearance.

Claypots Barbarossa has a bit of everything on its Eurocentric menu, but make sure you sample some of the seafood – it's what it's best known for.

Top image: Hardware Lane courtesy of Visit Victoria

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