The Australian city of Melbourne throws up plenty of intriguing culinary creations, like the infamous “deconstructed coffee” and the $5 Nutella spoon of yore.
Now the internet has turned their attention to these activated charcoal fish and chips, which aren’t like your average fish and chips.
For A$19 (US$14) at the Long Story Short Café, the dish comes with a side of beetroot labneh, chips and a salad.
But some people can’t ignore that the fish looks like, well, you can guess.
Yes, it looks like poop, as numerous people have commented on the café’s Instagram page.
“Should put some corn or sesame seed in there for realism,” one person commented. “I’m sure it tastes great but looks very unappealing to eat,” reads another comment.
It’s an observation doesn’t faze the café’s owner, Ly Nguyen, who said it’s one of their best sellers.
“At first it was hurtful, however it has become one of our most popular dishes and we have people lining up at the door for it so we cannot complain,” she said via email.
The apple cider batter contains activated charcoal, which apparently has a range of health benefits like reducing gas and bloating, helping lower cholesterol and aiding hangovers.
Nguyen explained it came together after her fiancé thought regular fish and chips were “too boring and normal,” so he added activated charcoal to the mix. And apparently it doesn’t taste too different. It’s still “very delicious fish and chips with a lightly crispy skin,” she said.
“We like to do things a bit different and love seeing our customers reactions to the dishes,” Nguyen said.
“In a nutshell, we’re obsessed with high quality food and coffee, appreciate the social media love that we receive from our customers (the good and the bad!) and we’re going to continue with our journey of producing delicious food whilst always offering a WOW factor.”