IGNI has been a cathartic experience for Chef Aaron Turner, who needed to reset his compass after the closure of Loam, and that passion and the renaissance of his love of the industry is clear to see on the plate.
The pared-back space, located down a nondescript laneway in Geelong, fits the brief perfectly. The restaurant revolves around the wood-fire menu, with a level of service that pitches and achieves a high standard of delivery.
‘Prawn, lettuce, citrus’ is exactly as it reads, apart from the fact that it is cooked on point, and is served with a lovely balanced broth. The depth and clarity of the chicken liver pâté is impressive, while the yellow-eye mullet, with brassica and bullhorn pepper, is surprisingly delicate in profile. The expertly sourced and sensationally cooked quail is served with flatbread, broccoli and rhubarb separately, and, like the majority of the courses, the saucing is absolutely exquisite.
PSST! Be sure to also try The Hot Chicken Project, the super-casual Nashville-style fried chicken outlet that was conceived by Chef Turner on a visit to the United States.