The Flame bar and grill has been operating on Beach street opposite Lake Wakatipu for 8 years. Their ribs are legendary, and are very popular among locals and tourists.
Flame is tucked away upstairs and you will be able to find them by just following your nose from the smell of the grilled meat!
The menu consists of several sections, including entrees, flame-grilled, ribs, burgers, and seafood. The flame grilled section has different cuts of beef, lamb cutlets, tiger prawns, and peri-peri chicken. There is also a mixed grill platter on the menu, which is a great way to enjoy a bit of everything
What to drink with ribs? Beer!
We started with the seafood chowder. It was pretty amazing. The ingredients were fresh, and the soup was thick and creamy with a nice depth of rich seafood flavour. The dish also came with generous amounts of seafood, like prawns, mussels, clams, and fish, as well as celery, capsicum, and other herbs. We loved it.
We ordered two big platters to share between five of us, and they nearly took up the entire table. The portions were much bigger than we expected (which is a good thing), and the smell of the grilled meat made us salivate. We couldn’t wait to dig in!
The first platter we ordered was the Flame mixed grill, which included ribs, sirloin steak, peri-peri chicken, boerewors sausage, and chips.
The sirloin steak was served with fried onions on top, which gave a nice crunch. I enjoyed the charred exterior and the almost rare meat in the middle of the steak. However, the steak was a little overcooked and dry towards the edges.
The peri-peri chicken, however, was beautifully grilled and seasoned. The skin was slightly crunchy and sweet, and the meat was soft and tender.
The flavour of the boerewors sausage was very unique, it is a South African sausage that is made up of at least 90% of meat, with the remaining being comprised of spices and various seasonings. I personally found the sausage a little too dry and coarse inside (which boerewors sausage are supposed to be). I would like it better if it was more juicy and flavorful, like German sausages. However, everyone else enjoyed the unique flavours and textures.
We also ordered another full rack of ribs, and our eyes were certainly bigger than our stomachs… For the sides, you can choose to have either peri-peri chips or baby potatoes with sour cream. It was really massive, I do recommend getting a full rack if you go in a large group. Surprisingly, my dad who does not enjoy chips normally, loved the peri-peri chips there.
The rib was executed nicely with the grilling and sauces. These ribs certainly hit the spot and were downright addictive. The meat was soft and fell off the bone, and had a great smoky flavour from the grill. The sauce gave the ribs a sticky and tangy sweet flavour that makes you roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty right away.
The staff were encouraging us to finish everything, however, we were beaten by the sheer amount of meat, and ended up taking the rest home.
Overall, Flame is a great place to enjoy grilled meat, especially their signature ribs. The atmosphere is casual yet nice, and the service we had was friendly and helpful.
Although some of the grilled meats were a little bit disappointing, others took me by surprise with their exotic flavours and quality execution. I would recommend getting the seafood chowder, ribs, and peri-peri chicken if you plan to visit Flame. And if you have any friends that is a meat lover, you must take them there!
61 Beach Street, Queenstown, NZ