La Cachette is bringing familiarity, warmth and conviviality to the bustling Geelong waterfront precinct.
Geelong born-and-bred Matt Podbury spent more than a decade dreaming of opening a restaurant, and with La Cachette, he finally got there.
An acclaimed chef with years of experience, including Captain Moonlite in Anglesea, as well as previously working with Mathieu Rostaing Tayard at Café Sillon in Lyon France and James Lowe at Michelin-starred Lyle’s in London, La Cachette sees Podbury in the thick of the action back in his hometown.
Translating to ‘the hideaway’ in French, one of Geelong’s newest fine-dining destinations (which opened in June 2021) is a modern, intimate and quiet 25-seat bistro, tucked away in Steampacket Place on the lush Geelong Waterfront.
Taking influence from the French bistronomy movement, started by Paris restaurant La Régalade in 1992, La Cachette is different to most French places. There’s no steak frites, or French-onion soup, white tablecloths or waistcoated staff. Instead, Podbury wants to show Geelong what contemporary French dining looks like, injecting fun and accessibility, as well as warmth and intimacy, into the local culinary scene.
The $85 fixed price menu includes two snacks and local sourdough bread, followed by a small choice of entrees, mains and desserts, with the option to add an extra entrée. Changing every three weeks, the menu reflects a selection of seasonal dishes inspired by Podbury’s travels through France and the incredible produce found in Victoria from nearby farmers, growers and suppliers.
Focusing on nourishment and passion, expect high-quality dishes such as flamed mackerel with burnt apple, chicory and basil; Onion Farci with Beef Cheek, bone marrow and hazelnut; duck breast, celeriac, quince and caramelised cream; and Murray cod with cauliflower, brown butter and buckwheat. Remember this is just a taste of what we’ve seen in the past. The menu is ever-changing here which makes the experience all the more unique, no matter how often you go.
As for dessert, prepare your tastebuds for decadent dishes like basked chocolate mousse with blood orange and chilli; Tarte of Nori and Pear with Goat’s milk ice cream; as well as artisan and hard-to-find cheeses to finish. Just recently I indulged in a Honey glazed pumpkin, pumpkin seed ice cream and brioche – and it was utter perfection.
Orchestrating the perfect balance of expertise and affable hospitality, the wine list will showcase smaller winemakers with stories and passion that inspires the dining experience. Leaning towards natural and minimal intervention winemaking, La Cachette’s small and always evolving list will be able to accommodate more traditional tastes as well.
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With an intimate and welcoming space, an open kitchen, and knowledgeable staff who go above and beyond for each and every customer, La Cachette has certainly become one of the best – and most unique – dining experiences in Victoria.
La Cachette is located in Steampacket Place, Geelong Waterfront.
Reservations can be made via the website.