Astoria, Featured, Food and Drink, Sponsored
Apr 15, 2016

A Charming Night at The Thirsty Koala

  When I tell friends from outside Astoria that we have an excellent Australian restaurant in the neighborhood, the first question I get is always, “What exactly is Australian food?” (…)

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When I tell friends from outside Astoria that we have an excellent Australian restaurant in the neighborhood, the first question I get is always, “What exactly is Australian food?” After our most recent trip to The Thirsty Koala, I’ll simply forward them some of Marielle Solan‘s gorgeous photos and say, “What is Australian food? It’s delicious, that’s what.”

In all seriousness, have you been to The Thirsty Koala lately? I hadn’t in quite a while, so I was delighted when they invited the WHA team over for a complimentary meal on a rainy weeknight. The menu changes every six months, so if it’s been a while since you’ve visited, I suggest you make plans to head over and check out what’s new!

We started with the meat pies, (pictured above) which were immediately a highlight. The flaky, buttery crust enveloped an excellent beefy filling. If we didn’t have so many more dishes on the way, I think MANY more meat pies would have been devoured.

Next up was the Flatbread, with fresh tomatoes, red onion, pesto, and mozzarella. As we noticed throughout our evening, The Thirsty Koala really steps up to the plate with their vegetarian options. This dish really exemplifies that: the simple ingredients prepared well lead to a very good starter.

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Another magnificent meatless option: the corn and jalapeno fritters. This is comfort food at its best: fried goodness with just a little kick. This was another dish that we would have loved to keep eating and eating, but there was WAY more to come.

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The sandwich offerings (or Jaffles, as they call them in Australia) were both solid. The Todman Ave (named after the owner’s childhood street) is a satisfying combination of free-range chicken, avocado, cheddar cheese, and asada sauce on fresh bread.

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The other sandwich we sampled was the Uluru, a pulled pork creation with a Kentucky bourbon glaze and crunchy coleslaw. The meat was an interesting combination of smoky and sweet, and the texture of the coleslaw added a nice touch.

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It’s always nice to have an option that’s healthy, but still feels like a treat. The Organic Quinoa Bowl entree is just that: warm and delicious with orange, pumpkin, and mint. It was a favorite of Marielle’s!

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Is there a cooler way to serve fish than to cut open a parchment paper pouch and release heavenly steam? The Salmon En Papolitte was by far Meg’s favorite, and for good reason: the cooking method allowed the fish to taste extra fresh and moist. Also enclosed in the pouch was lemon, feta, sundried tomatoes, olives, and garlic. As someone who doesn’t care for olives, I probably wouldn’t order this as my own entree, but I appreciated how well the dish was prepared and presented, and very much enjoyed the fish’s flavor.

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There’s nothing like a quality plate of steak and potatoes. The Thirsty Koala’s 10 oz. Australian grass-fed Rib Eye doesn’t disappoint, with a perfect accompaniment of mushrooms, onions, and a Tasmanian pepper berry demi-glaz.

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Meat and potatoes not your thing? Again, you’re in luck! The heaping portion of Eggplant Parmigiana represented, and would hold up in comparison to any Italian restaurant in the neighborhood.

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Another cool thing about The Thirsty Koala is their commitment to offering gluten-free options. The pasta of the day, which was Elbow Alla Vodka during our trip, is always gluten-free, although you would never realize it while you’re enjoying the dish. These spiral-y noodles had all the goodness of regular pasta, and the sauce/cheese complemented the elbows well.

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Another special occasion-worthy dish: the Roasted Chicken with Sweet Potatoes. A trio of spices combined to make the entree excellent: rosemary, oregano, and sage. The lemon and garlic added a nice touch, and the bird itself was perfectly juicy.

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After all of these starters, sandwiches, and entrees, we didn’t have much room for dessert. That is, until the options came out.

Just look at that cake with ice cream and a toffee sauce! None of us could pass up a few bites.

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And finally, the Kola Truffle: dark chocolate-coated chocolate truffle with strawberries, ice cream and fresh chocolate syrup. A sweet ending to a fabulous meal.

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Thanks again to The Thirsty Koala for treating us to a wonderful evening!

 

The Thirsty Koala (35-12 Ditmars Blvd, Astoria) | (718) 626-5430
thethirstykoala.com | Facebook  | Instagram Twitter

This post is sponsored by The Thirsty Koala. Thanks for supporting the brands that support We Heart Astoria.

 

About Lindsay Goyette

Lindsay has been eating and drinking her way through Queens since 2011. A casting director by day and Astoria explorer by night, you can usually find her checking out live music, theatre, or the newest neighborhood spot to enjoy a craft beer.

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