On what is pretty easily the crappiest Brisbane weather day in at least the last year we headed off to the International Hotel for lunch and a few beers. It's no secret to anyone that knows me and the team at In Parms Way that I we're huge fans of the International Hotel but this was the first time we've been there for lunch.
A quick picture to show why we hold the International Hotel in such regard.
This is a pint of their Indian Chief. Yes, the International Hotel has it's own micro brewery and yes that beer has a slice of lemon in it. The first sip of the Indian Chief is quite bitter but it has this delicious citrus after note, even without the slice of lemon. After a brief chat with the bar staff I learned that there is also orange in the beer. Quite interesting. I've even had dreams about this beer with today being the third Sunday in a row that we've been there for drinks.
But, we also went there for lunch and you know what that means, chicken parms to be devoured. How was it? Picture below.
This wasn't your standard chicken parm, it's the Mexico variety, and boy it was nice. The meal came out pretty quickly, we waited about 20 minutes from ordering to the plates coming out to the table. The price was pretty good too at $19.90 for the parm.
Instead of the normal cheese, ham and napoli sauce the Mexico has jalapeno's, pepperoni, roast peppers, Mexican salsa and guacamole. You can also see they've stuck corn chips into the top of the salsa which was a fun touch.
Size: While the chicken wasn't huge in area, it was quite thick. Definitely a meal that made me full at the end. There was also a fair amount of chips sitting under the chicken. The salad was huge but came in a separate bowl so was easy to remove (except for the leaves that fell onto the plate).
Chicken: Very nice, cooked pretty much perfectly and it looked/tasted like a lot of effort was put into the crumbing. You could see the herbs in the crumb too, something that I like.
Cheese: There was a small amount of cheese on there which was nice. Fairly neutral but helped hold it all together.
Jalapeno: Delicious and hot. My first bite had two bits of jalapeno and I think set the scene for the rest of the meal. There is never anything wrong when chicken and jalapeno's are mixed.
Pepperoni: Not too many on the dish, but they added a nice texture and flavour component. Could probably have done with a few more on the plate. I think ham works better on a meal like this because you can have a lot more on the plate without it taking over the meal completely. But the pepperoni worked really well.
Roast Peppers/Mexican Salsa: I'm going to combine these are they were pretty much mixed together. The salsa was delicious and so were the roast peppers. Did the job of the sauce just as well as napoli does. You can never go wrong with roast peppers and they were great. Cut up into small strips, small enough that you didn't have to worry about getting too much on your fork at once.
Guacamole: I'm not a huge fan of guac but it worked well with the corn chips and the salsa, had a few bites of chicken and corn chip too. Very good, fun addition to the meal.
Chips: Standard beer battered chips, didn't bring anything exciting to the meal but were good none the less. With the all the other flavours going on it wasn't missed but I think with a standard parm if might have been different.
Salad: Pretty boring and unexciting. At least it came in a separate bowl. Moved it away and forgot about it. Had what I think was a lemon vinaigrette on it.
Another member of our lunch team got the Ploughman schnitzel. I took a photo before he started eating it. Looked pretty damn awesome.
Bacon, creamy mushroom sauce, mushroom and cheese. I'll get that next time!
Overall I was very happy with my lunch. Nice food and excellent beer. It doesn't really get any better. If you're in the area (or even if you're not) I highly recommend a visit to the International Hotel. For $5.50 per pint of beer there's no reason not to go and check it out.
-Dave the Mega-Parm