Shop 10/530 Collins Street
(enter via Little Collins Street)
+61 3 9614 4500
State of Grace
477 Collins Street
Melbourne Vic 3000
+61 3 8644 7110
French cuisine, dessert and wine make up a perfect night and that’s how it went down last Thursday evening at Mr Mason and State of Grace. They had teamed up to present a wondrous affair of delicious food and heady booze.
Our evening started off the way every evening should begin, with French bubbles and canapes at Mr Mason. This was enjoyed al fresco with a guitarist serenading. Mumm in one hand, the other was free to snatch up the bite-size morsels circulating about. There was duck rilette with candied walnut, steak tartare, cured salmon on wafer and my favourite, red capsicum and goats cheese crepe.
We were then ushered into the dining section. Black walls, tan leather couches and bronze lamps made up a very sexy masculine room. A short spiel was given on the dishes and wines offered that evening and then we were ready to tuck in. I sat with I-Hua, Ashley and Melissa and their plus-ones and while everyone almost simultaneously concurred that the pork belly was the most alluring item on the menu, Ash and myself swayed away from the carnivorous path and chose a mushroom number.
Both were exquisite. I stole a bite of pork from The Angmoh and marvelled at the texture and flavour of the pork loin. It was tender, yet firm, and every bite oozed out a clean porky taste. The crackling was flawless. The mushroom pie had the most amazing balance of flavours with rich buttery pastry housing earthy meaty mushrooms that had been braised in syrupy madeira. This was paired with the 2012 Chant du Midi Rose that had notes of strawberries and cream. It was so wonderful, I’m hunting up a case of it to hoard.
The sides of beetroot with goat’s cheese and bacon on lentils weren’t too shabby either. The beetroot had been smoked, providing an excellent twist on this ubiquitous pairing. Bacon isn’t quite my thing and I steered clear, although I heard others raving about it as we crossed the road to commence on dessert.
State of Grace is the most eclectic lounge I’ve come across. Decorated with random knick-knacks, it keeps a posh façade lightened by the quirkiest of ornaments. There’s plush Victorian settees, pristine white table cloth and English porcelain, but high up on a wall a giraffe gazes down to watch over all the mishappenings that may be about to occur.
Dessert comes with more alcohol, hooray! There’s dark chocolate mousse and a pumpkin and hazelnut financier, paired with either a moscato or a sticky botrytis Semillon. Chocolate mousse is The Angmoh’s favourite dessert in the world and he almost licked the whole plate clean. I was lucky enough to spoon away a small portion and it was eye-closingly devine. The financier was dense but lifted up by a fizzling cinnamon sherbet. To be honest, I was too entranced by the plate it sat on and pondered how I could make away with it.
The night ended with flaming cocktails but alas, The Angmoh and I are aging homebodies and needed to be tucked into bed before the clock struck 10. We missed out on flaming cocktails but not before finding out the bar’s secret, hidden in the depths. We were gifted a goodie bag with drink cards and, mark my words, we’ll be back to complete the night by getting stupendously drunk and falling from grace.
Disclaimer: The Hangry Bitch and The Angmoh were invited by The Publican Group Australia to participate in the Mason and Grace event.