SkyHigh Mt Dandenong chooses I&J Flathead Fillets for consistency and quality
ONE OF MELBOURNE’S PREMIERE TOURIST ATTRACTIONS and restaurant venues, SkyHigh Mt Dandenong boasts spectacular views and an award-winning bistro and restaurant. Its function centre is one of Melbourne’s most sought-after venues for weddings and celebrations, and Head Chef Garry Button says it’s one of the most frequently photographed places in Victoria.
“I’ve been here for one year now and it really is an amazing place to work,” Garry enthuses. His menus at SkyHigh utilise its kitchen garden for ingredients such as silverbeet, sprouts and herbs, and feature locally sourced seasonal produce wherever possible.
The premises has two levels – upstairs is the function centre which can hold up to 200, and downstairs is the a la carte restaurant and bistro which can seat around 120. “During the day it’s mainly bistro style menus as we get a lot of tourists, both locals and international visitors,” Garry says.
“The internationals tend to come on bus tours as part of a multi-day sightseeing trip, so we offer special packages like tour group menus which offer them a two course meal. The locals tend to come in smaller groups but even so it’s a constant stream. The view from the top of Mt Dandenong is probably one of the most unique in the whole region as it looks right across the mountain ranges.”
Fish and chips is a staple bistro menu item that’s always popular with locals and international tourists alike and Garry uses I&J South American Crispy Battered Flathead Fillets to ensure consistency of both presentation and taste. “It’s a skinless natural flathead fillet, which is a great choice to offer on the bistro menu when customers are looking for a reasonably priced, nice lunch,” he says. “The I&J Flathead Fillets are extremely consistent – the quality control is amazing. We’re serving so many customers across all age brackets and backgrounds so it’s critical for us to be able to offer a good quality, consistent product at a competitive pricepoint and this ticks all the boxes.”
Garry says the golden crispy batter of I&J Flathead Fillets is delicious when deep fried. “We cook them from frozen and serve them as fish and chips with a rainbow slaw and a dipping sauce or a sriracha aioli, and we also use them in a fish sandwich with Old Bay Spice which we serve with fresh salsa in a nice Turkish roll from the local baker.”
He adds that the fillets come conveniently packaged in a compact 3kg carton – strong enough to protect against damage in transit and the perfect size for freezer storage. “The fillets themselves are consistently sized which is great for portion control and they hold up well both in and out of the packaging. With the fat line removed, they have a nice clean flavour with no harsh aftertones, which makes them a product that everyone loves – we also serve them as a kid’s fish and chip portion and it’s important for children’s menus that the fish flavour isn’t too strong.”
When Garry first took the role of Head Chef at SkyHigh, the bistro was using a different brand of fillets which he wasn’t happy with. “The consistency wasn’t there and they just didn’t present well – they fell apart too easily. So I switched to I&J, which I’d used before, and it was just an amazing thing – we had better performance and better feedback from customers. It was clear the I&J Flathead Fillets were a much higher quality product and easier for the staff to handle.”
Find out more about the range of quality seafood products available from Simplot Foodservice by visiting simplotfoodservice.com.au