Category Archives: Modern

Nora

Nora
156 Elgin Street
Carlton
Vic 3053
+61 3 9041 8644
Nora on Urbanspoon

Nora

Fakebooo selected a café for one of our Thursday brunch sessions: Nora. He had yet to sample the famous charcoal-based tarts and promptly needed to rectify that.

welcome

We stepped into the small-spaced café in Carlton and fell in love straight away. It was stark, it was clean, it was cute and the only the presence of the open kitchen and coffee machine prevented the café from appearing like an art gallery.

coffee
Piccolo latte $4

As Fakebooo sipped on his decent Small Batch coffee, we contemplated the menu. It was hard to decide when everything sounded so interesting and alluring. In the end, we made our choices: “Dear Mitchell” for me and “Pig from the Ground it’s Raised From” for Booo.

Pig
Pig from the ground it’s raised from – bacon, scallop, mushroom, watercress & taro puree, radish $18.50

If you thought the names of the dishes belonged to a degustation menu, wait till you see the plating! Fakebooo’s dish was just too beautiful to eat. The taro puree was a gentle smear at the rim, with the zucchini and radish artfully arranged to hide the slab of bacon steak. The taste of the dish was just as amazing. The pork was tender and full of flavour and topped with dehydrated scallop flakes that provided sweetness. The raw vegetables gave a refreshing green taste to counter the richness of the meat and the smooth taro paste bound it all together.

egg
Dear Mitchell – eggs our way, house chilli dressing, shallots, salted shrimps and Thai greens $14.50

Although my dish didn’t appear quite so pretty, it was bloody tasty. The beaten eggs were cooked in a 62 degree fashion, making it softer, more wobbly and more gelatinous than its boring steamed cousin. The dressing of sweet chilli and dried shrimp pumped up the flavours, giving simultaneous little bursts of sweetness and umami. The Asian vegetables of green papaya, Vietnamese mint and spring onion provided a little rawness and a little crunch.

sides

Both our dishes came with a side of wombok and a brown muffin. The wombok was glazed with house-made Thai curry paste, which confounded both Fakebooo and I. It just didn’t seem to go with either of our dishes. The bread on the other hand was well-received. It turned out to be a very eggy Yorkshire pudding-like bread, and it served well as our carb component to our brunch mains.

I loved everything about Nora: from goggling at the (t)art on display, to sipping on sweet tingly sparkling water (did I mention it’s free!), and awakening my tastebuds with the playful but delicious food. What about the tarts you ask?

tart
Charcoal tart – lychee, cheddar, Vegemite $5

This time, I tried the lychee, cheddar and Vegemite tart. The odd combination of ingredients meshed well in a pungent, sweet and salty manner. I liked it, although the true-blue Vegemite-lovin’ Aussie Angmoh refused to take a bite.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Brunch, Carlton, Coffee, Modern, Sweets

Estelle Bar and Kitchen

Estelle Bar and Kitchen
243 High Street
Northcote
Vic 3070
+61 3 9489 4609
Estelle Bar & Kitchen on Urbanspoon

IMG_8780

One of my all-time favourite restaurants in Melbourne is The Estelle. Fakebooo and I had a degustation several years ago. That night, my heart was captured by the rhubarb and musk dessert and the memory of it lingers. I’ve returned to The Estelle a couple years back for a truffle event held by Fringe Food Festival and it too was spectacular, with the hand-rolled pasta and truffle sponge cake etched deeply in my mind. These visits were done during my pre-blogging days and I finally returned this year to try The Estelle’s celebration of winter, organised by the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.

Each week over the month of August an animal was paid homage to, and on our drive into Northcote, The Angmoh jubilantly announced “we are going for Angmoh duck!” This is coming from an Australian man who, in his 28 years of living in Australia, is only familiar with the Chinese styles of duck, including Peking duck and the famous roast duck from Pacific House.

IMG_8779

As we settled into our wines, a cleansing entrée of duck consommé was tipped out of a sake bottle, pooling onto roast beetroot, duck leg and chickweed. The root vegetable bled into the broth, giving it a gradually deepening rosy hue. The duck leg was packed with flavour and each bite enhances the duck flavour of the soup.

IMG_8781

Next, we had confit duck breast and leg with broccolini and a duck reduction. The meat was perfectly cooked, tender and blushingly pink. A smear of sweet quince paste augments the richness of poultry. A side of kipfler potatoes with lapcheong, shiitake and parsley is set down in an earthern vessel, borrowing flavours from one of my childhood favourites, claypot rice. The main also comes with coleslaw, dressed in a sparingly creamy dressing.

IMG_8777

We finished off with a simple quince tart. The fruit had been caramelized into sweet sticky slivers and sat on crisp puff pastry. This was accompanied by a quenelle of vanilla-speckled crème fraiche. It was light and an extremely pleasant manner to round off the meal.

IMG_8778

With flawless execution, warm service and incredible food, The Estelle will remain a favourite and I look forward to yet another wonderful experience next year.

2 Comments

Filed under Australian, Modern, Northcote

Northern Light

Northern Light
102 Smith Street
Colllingwood
Vic 3066
+61 3 9416 0698
Northern Light on Urbanspoon

IMG_8916

Fakebooo wasn’t my first gay boyfriend. I had a wonderful solid relationship with Juds during our pre-uni days. Movies after school, KTV sessions on public holidays, heck, we joked about marrying each other if we were still single by the age of thirty. But of course, The Angmoh came along and I was a goner. Anyway, when Juds finally announced that he would visit me in wintry Melbourne, I was elated! And to make it even more exciting, he was getting into the food scene, having watched the American, Canadian and Australian versions of Masterchef and experimenting and learning from his mum in the kitchen.

IMG_8918IMG_8919
(Left) Freshly shucked oyster, Yuzu sake $4
(Right) Whipped tofu, broad beans, soy, edamame, gai lan $16

I wrecked my brain trying to come up with a dinner location to take him to. I wanted it to be simple yet well-executed, easy to comprehend yet delicious and stylish without the drama. I had come across many a positive review about Northern Light and decided that yep, that would be it.

IMG_8920IMG_8921
Smoked eel, sushi rice croquette $6

There’s a never ending list of eateries along Smith Street and Northern Light is amongst them. A handsome bar occupies most of the narrow space of the restaurant, topped with a maze of twisted wires and lights. The menu leans strongly towards Asian fusion with most of the dishes designed for sharing.

IMG_8925IMG_8923
Pork crackle, warm cheese curd, togarashi $9

Juds left the ordering up to us but he did insist on a serve of pork crackle. The Angmoh, as usual, had a lone oyster to start his dinner. Typically laconic when it comes to describing his food, he simply slurped it up and nodded in approval. The whipped tofu with Asian veges came next with a heady scent of sesame oil. Dressed in light soy, it was an elegant yet humble Chinese dish. I thought the broad beans had been cooked beautifully, for they were soft and lacked bitterness. Juds described the whipped tofu as “squashed tofu that’s been whipped, lor” and almost had me snorting out the light airy soy curd. The smoked eel croquette was a stunner. The slivers of eel provided a mild smokiness and the dill gave the rice an unexpected but pleasant aroma. Juds couldn’t get enough of the lush rich mayo that came along with the croquettes.

IMG_8922IMG_8924
(Left) Xinjiang style lamb ribs, bbq peppers, chilli $25
(Right) Wild mushroom okayu, WA truffle, comte $32

Our mains of lamb ribs and mushroom okayu were set down, shortly followed by the pork crackle. The ribs were finger-licking good and fell off the bone without much effort. The flavour of the lamb was sealed within the charred edges, making it one very tasty dish. The okayu turned out to be similar to congee. It was salty and could possibly use more truffle, or at least truffle oil for a bit more pizzazz. The crackle had Juds full attention. It was the most sinful keropok I’d come across, with the deep fried pig skin covered with lashings of mayo. It was good but I’d rather a plate of roast pork belly crackling anytime.

IMG_8926IMG_8929
Broken ice cream sandwich $15

For dessert, we decided to sample the broken ice cream sandwich and the tteok (pronounced “tok”). The former turned out to be vanilla ice cream topped with velvety chocolate mousse surrounded by shards of cocoa biscuits. I loved every bit of it. Juds was really interested in the tteok as he had been living in Korea for a little while. Usually a savoury dish, he reckoned the rice cakes had been steamed and then fried to achieve a soft and fluffy texture, while retaining the expected chewiness and crisp outlines. It was drizzled with maple and topped with sesame seeds for a savoury contrast.

IMG_8928IMG_8930
Fried Tteok, maple syrup, sesame $7

Dinner at Northern Light was extremely enjoyable. The food, although lacking a wow factor, is consistently pleasant. Service is exemplary and makes the overall experience a night to remember. We capped our evening off with a stroll while checking out some of the art works from the Gertrude Street Projection Festival. This was my favourite.

IMG_8933

2 Comments

Filed under Asian, Collingwood, Modern

Lee Ho Fook

Lee Ho Fook
92 Smith Street
Collingwood
Vic 3066
+61 3 9077 6261
Lee Ho Fook on Urbanspoon

IMG_7557IMG_7559

Fusion Chinese are two words I personally do not want to hear side-by-side. Maybe it’s because I’m Chinese and so I find the “bastardisation” of cuisine from my culture unacceptable. As narrow-minded as that may sound, I have to admit, Lee Ho Fook has opened my eyes and palate.

IMG_7534

Dinner at Lee Ho Fook was to celebrate Chinese New Year and also to catch up with my bunch of Singapore homies from my previous work-place. We managed to snag a reservation along the popular, then-newish, restaurant on Smith Street and rocked up to a dim raucous atmosphere at Lee Ho Fook.

IMG_7530IMG_7535
Milk bun, braised pork belly and cucumber $6

Gossip exchanged, we got down into serious business with Fatbooo and Fatbooobooo starting with a pork belly milk bun to share. We were expecting a “gua bow” (ala Wonderbao) type of bun but what was presented was a slider of sort. Fried soft sweet buns sandwiched a crisp deep-fried slice of pork belly, accompanied by a slathering of garlicky-vinegary chilli sauce.

IMG_7537
Crispy eggplant, spiced red vinegar $14

Carolyn, The Angmoh and myself sat out on entrees and were delighted as soon as our mains arrived. There was super crunchy eggplant, coated in a delicate caramelised black vinegar, heightened by the sweet nuances of kechap manis. This is fancy fish-fragrant eggplant, well-executed and elegant to the max.

IMG_7536IMG_7541
(Left) Char grilled wagyu, green chili, watercress and pancakes $19
(Right) House made tofu, hot and sour sauce $22

Instead of the usual Peking duck pancakes that all the “guai lows” adore, Lee Ho Fook’s spin encompasses Wagyu beef, succulent and full of flavour. The house-made tofu softens the swamp of hot and sour soup and lends a gentle fragile hand to round up the tangy broth. The soup is perfect to drizzle over rice, which our table was lacking due to a miscommunication. We had initially asked for rice for the table but 2-3 dishes into our dinner all that was served was a single bowl. It took a while to finally get our order through and more bowls were then placed on our table.

IMG_7542IMG_7544
Yunan style lamb shoulder, hoisin mustard, spicy pickles, cos lettuce (for 2 or more) $52

We also had slow-roasted cumin lamb shoulder, which was superbly fall-apart tender. The spices were well-proportioned with a good balance between the flavour of the meat and the cumin. We pretty much left the supplemented chilli onion jam alone, it didn’t seem right as a pairing. Finally there was the saltwater duck, which appeared hidden in a blanket of radish, with each sliver of duck meat luscious and aromatic with gentle tea flavours. It was unanimous that this was the winning dish of the night and might have ended up with a possible chopstick war to have the very last piece.

IMG_7561
Saltwater duck, red salad $18

The night was yet to be over and dessert had to be had. Each dessert came in a thoughtfully portioned individual serve with half of us choosing the sorbet and the remaining half, the custard. The former is extremely feminine, with the pink floral lychee sorbet submerged in a bath of sparkling rosé. The custard is essentially crème caramel with the jasmine flavours playing hide and seek on the tongue.

IMG_7546IMG_7548
(Left) Violet and lychee sorbet, sparkling rosé $5
(Right) Jasmine tea custard, burnt caramel $5

I thought I’d be sceptical throughout all of dinner at Lee Ho Fook but it turned out to be quite an enjoyable experience. The lure for me to return has to be the saltwater duck and crisp eggplant. And hopefully, next time round, rice will come at the start, and enough to go around.

5 Comments

Filed under Chinese, Collingwood, Modern

Union Dining

Union Dining
270-272 Swan Street
Richmond
Vic 3121
+61 3 9428 2988
Union Dining on Urbanspoon

IMG_8270

The Angmoh and I have made it past yet another year. We celebrated with dinner at Union Dining, a handsome bistro on Swan Street in Richmond.

IMG_8256

The Angmoh loves his shellfish and couldn’t go past oysters. It didn’t matter where they came from, Sydney Rocks or Tassie, they were fresh and plump and slid down a fair treat to start his night. I, on the other hand, had a vegetarian starter. It was beautiful with wonderful pickled mushrooms set against rich goats curd and a soft boiled egg. The tanginess of the mushrooms helped arouse the palate and appetite.

IMG_8257
Oysters mignonette (per piece) $3.50

IMG_8260
Mushrooms pickled and roasted, quinoa, herbs, whipped goats curd, soft egg $19

For his main, The Angmoh went predictable and had steak. It was cooked perfectly, with a lovely charred crust and juicy bloody meat in the middle. It had a buttery flavour which went well with the bitter radicchio and salty anchovies. I had the goulash, which was presented in the most unexpected manner: there were little tears of deep fried cheese, perfect to soak up the hearty tomato stew.

IMG_8261
300g grain fed Victorian Black Angus scotch fillet, radicchio, Ortiz anchovy, red pepper hazelnut relish $39.50

IMG_8263
Hopkins River beef blade Austrian goulash, quark cheese spaetzle dumplings, sour cream $36

IMG_8262
French fries, smoked paprika salt $8

Dessert was a simple affair, with The Angmoh ordering his favourite: chocolate mousse. It was velvety smooth and intense with cocoa. My gelato, unfortunately, was a huge disappointment. The chocolate was alright, grainy in texture and nothing to shout about, but the pistachio tasted of essence and chemicals.

IMG_8264IMG_8267
Pistachio and chocolate gelati $12
Chocolate pot de crème, spiced blood plum crème fraiche $14

Union Dining still serves up some delicious satisfying food, most enjoyed in its cosy ambience and friendly warmth from staff.

Oh, and check out what The Angmoh got me for our anniversary.

IMG_8314

1 Comment

Filed under Australian, Modern, Richmond, Steak

Tasmania: Amelia Espresso, Smolt, Machine Laundry Cafe, Garagistes, Bruny Island

IMG_8136

Over Easter long weekend, The Angmoh and I crossed the Bass Straight over to beautiful hilly Tasmania. Our initial plans of landing early in Launceston and touring the Tamar Valley were ruined by Jetstar’s 2 hour delay. As soon as we hit Launceston, we quickly fuelled up (as Melbournians would) with a good hit of caffeine.

IMG_8101
(Left) Piccolo latte
(Right) Magic

Amelia’s Espresso is a small café in the Launceston that offers coffees from Ritual beans and small array of sweets. It seems that magics (or barista lattes) are no longer just a Melbourne commodity. The Angmoh was extremely pleased when his magic was served, it was very well-made. And so was my piccolo latte.

IMG_8103
Raspberry Chocolate French Toast – French toast sandwich with raspberry jam and chocolate. Served with Meander Valley double cream $15

IMG_8135
Dove Lake

After making a pit stop for groceries, we hit the high road for Cradle Mountain but not before stopping at Christmas Hill Raspberry Farm for scones and raspberry chocolate French toast. That evening, we did a leisurely stroll around the tranquil Dove Lake. The next morning, we attempted the Cradle Mountain Summit walk. Three hours of fog, rain, gale winds and hail later, we tucked tails and made a beeline for the car. We will definitely put this back on our future travel plans, and preferably in summer.

IMG_8137IMG_8138
Pancetta, broccolini, cavalo nero, chilli, reggiano, mozzarella $23.90

IMG_8140
White fish linguini, chilli, garlic, parsley

The drive into Hobart took up the rest of the afternoon. Dinner that night was at Smolt, a newish upcoming Italian restaurant in the popular Salamanca Square. To be honest, we were initially going to settle for pizza at Cargo but were informed that there would be a 70 minute wait for food. The waitress actually suggested that we check out other restaurants around the square, including Smolt. After we put our names down on the waiting list, the maitre’d encouraged us to have drinks across the lane at a tapas joint. I love that restauranteurs in Tasmania have such respect and amicability towards competing peers.

Smolt has a somewhat marine theme: from aqua-green tiles on the communal table, to a fishtank wall at the very entrance. I was in the mood for seafood pasta that night and the kitchen kindly agreeing to substitute shellfish with white fish. The broth was lovely and seafoody, with strong hints of garlic and white wine. The Angmoh’s pizza had a crisp thin base topped with quality ingredients of pancetta, mozzarella and cavalo nero. He devoured the entire thing deftly.

IMG_8150

Our 3rd day in Tasmania had us on a coffee hunt around Hobart. Pilgrim was closed for the holidays so we marched back to Salamanca Square for brunch at Machine Laundry Café. The name says it all, part laundromat, part café, it was pumping that Saturday morning. I had the biggest serve of mocha that morning, with the coffee served in a bowl. My breakfast wrap of scrambled eggs in roti was a delicious combination. The drizzle of chilli syrup reminded me of poh piah. The Angmoh built his own breakfast and had poached eggs, mushrooms, smashed avocado and smoked salmon. Each side was of a generous serve and The Angmoh proclaimed defeat about three-quarters into the dish.

IMG_8144
(Left) Ice espresso coffee $6
(Right) Maximum mocha $5

IMG_8147
Poached eggs with sourdough $10
Add mushrooms $3.50, avocado salsa $3.50, smoked salmon $4

IMG_8148
Machine packed roti bread filed with herbed scrambled eggs, served with chilli jam $15

We quickly perused the stalls along Salamanca market, where I bought the famed Tasmania scallop pie. I didn’t really enjoy it with its odd curried flavour. In my mistake, I ate it four hours later, where it had gone cold and gluggy. However for $7, it does contain a fair amount of whole scallops; mine had 6.

IMG_8152IMG_8158
(Left) Mona ferry terminal
(Right) Wall art aboard the Roma

IMG_8167IMG_8164

That afternoon, we checked out Mona. We took the 1.15pm ferry and arrived just in time for The Cloaca Professional’s “evacuation” exhibit. I thought that everyone on the ferry would be making a mad dash to view said exhibit at 2pm, but I was the only poo-obsessed one. After waiting in a room of swirling vessels and pipes and breathing in pungent cheesy air, we watched The Cloaca do what it had to do before exploring the rest of the museum. 2 hours later, we returned to watch it feast on a meal of salad and meatball sub. We were told that it gets beer on good days and that vindaloo results in a potent aftermath.

IMG_8186IMG_8192
House made bread with smoked butter

Dinner was a much anticipated affair that night. Garagistes now takes bookings in a two week window and we secured a seat at 6.30pm. It is simple, minimalistic and dark, with just a handful of long communal tables and plenty of kitchen action. Dinner is a 5 course degustation for $90, with the choice of paired sake. Three of the courses have 2 options to choose from, including main and dessert. Garagistes, even without your reservations, you are worth queuing for. Every dish was stunning and a gourmet delight. My favourites that night have to be the dumpling with shiitake in chicken soup and the beef. The former is the epitome of umami, with chicken skins, and pickled and fresh shiitake giving pow and punch to flavours, only to be softly rounded up with a delicate cloud of ricotta dumpling. I’m not normally one to combine fruit with meat or sauce with steak but the main course of Wagyu bavette had both and boy did they work well. The beef had a crust of berries, some powdered and some dehydrated for maximum flavour concentration. The jus of native pepper and mustard seeds is possibly the only Diane sauce I’ll ever approve of. Dinner at Garagistes is a memorable one and could be worth moving to Tassie for.

IMG_8199
hay roasted celeriac, smoked eel, curry leaf, egg yolk, saltbush

IMG_8191
poached southern calamari, green tomato bouillon, house ferments + chickweed

IMG_8200
fresh cheese dumpling, field mushroom, chicken skin, aged cheese rind + vin jaune broth

IMG_8201
heirloom tomatoes, smoked angasi oyster “salep dondurma”, pickled kombu

IMG_8202
wagyu bavette “steak dianne”

IMG_8196
poached quince, preserved lemon + boyd hill honey cream, smoked almond

IMG_8203
fragrant packham pear, fried egg mousse, black garlic caramel, ginger cake

Our final day concluded with a day trip to Bruny Island. We made a mistake of not researching opening hours of popular breakfast haunts and only found out at the very last minute that most cafes do not operate on Sundays or were closed for Easter. A trip back to Machine Laundry Café had us with takeaway coffees and the most endowed muffin I’ve ever come across. It was also one of the best muffins with a nice moist texture, the lack of overpowering sweetness and a crisp dome of deliciousness.

IMG_8204IMG_8208
Blackberry, ricotta and almond muffin

Once on the island, we visited Cape Bruny and took in the stunning views of the ocean. Culinary delights included lunch at Bruny Island Cheese, where I fell in love with the O.D.O, and bought 2 tubs home to crumble into salads or melt across pizzas. The Angmoh sampled a monster of an oyster at Get Shucked, while I slurped down a petite version.

IMG_8209
Kettering Ferry Terminal

IMG_8215
View from Cape Bruny

IMG_8229

And so, with our wanderlust satiated and bellies appeased, we headed back to Melbourne, albeit after yet another Jetstar delay.

 

Amelia Espresso
56 George Street
Launceston Tas 7250
+61 4 38 448 199
Amelia Espresso on Urbanspoon

Christmas Hill Raspberry Farm
9 Christmas Hills Road
Elizabeth Town
Tas 7304
+61 3 6362 2186
Christmas Hills Raspberry Farm on Urbanspoon

Smolt
2 Salamanca Square
Battery Point
Tas 7004
+61 3 6224 2554
Smolt on Urbanspoon

Machine Laundry Café
12 Salamanca Square
Battery Point
Tas 7004
+61 3 6224 9922
Machine Laundry Cafe on Urbanspoon

Garagistes
103 Murray Street
Hobart
Tas 7000
+61 3 6231 0558
Garagistes on Urbanspoon

Bruny Island Cheese Company
1807 Bruny Island Main Road
Great Bay
Tas 7150
+61 3 6260 6353
Bruny Island Cheese Co. on Urbanspoon

Get Shucked
1650 Bruny Island Main Road
Great Bay
Tas 7150
+61 4 28 606 250
Get Shucked on Urbanspoon

Leave a comment

Filed under Brunch, Coffee, Degustation, Fine Dining, Italian, Modern, Sweets, Tasmania, Travels

Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar

Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar
Level 1 Crown Metropol
8 Whiteman Street
Southbank Vic 3006
+61 3 9292 8300
Mr. Hive Kitchen & Bar on Urbanspoon

IMG_7743

The Angmoh and I had a date night at Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar. It was close to home, which meant I could scurry down 100m across the road in my hugging velvet dress and skinny heels. I succumb to heels in all their pin-pointy attractiveness, from the calf-stretching leg-lengthening glory to the painful so-gonna-lose-my balance arched agony.

IMG_7747IMG_7745

Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar is located in Crown Metropol. The space is sleek and handsome, with extremely high ceilings and an extensive black shelf interspersed with shiny gleaming copper pots. Mind you, I was half-tempted to nick off with one.

IMG_7752IMG_7748

As we deliberated over the menu, an amuse bouche of dried cherry tomato on polenta was set before us. I popped it in whole, and was instantly reminded of pizza. A really fancy, minute, gluten-free pizza.

IMG_7749
Oyster $4

As The Angmoh appreciated his very well-poured beer, I pounced on the distracted opportunity and started snapping away at the food. He had a lonesome oyster, which he described to be fresh and sweet, with just the hint of salt.

IMG_7750IMG_7751
(Left, top) Yellowfin tuna, ruby grapefruit, popcorn, sesame $15
(Left, bottom) Kingprawns, old bay spice $14
(Right) Crispy pig: pickled kohlrabi sauce gribiche $21

Amongst our selection of entrees, our favourites were the king prawns and crispy pork. The prawns were seasoned in a wonderful smoky aroma and somehow made me think of drunken prawns. I ordered the pork dish simply due to its name “Crispy Little Pig”. I believe it was pork jowl and it was full of rich porky flavour, which was nicely contrasted against the piquant ribbons of pickled kohlrabi.

IMG_7753IMG_7754
(Left) “Cape Grim” Tasmania hanger steak (250g) $34
(Right) Ricotta gnocchi, wild mushrooms, parsnip $30

Not usually a fan of gnocchi, I went adventurous and had ricotta gnocchi for my main. The Angmoh went old-school and predictable with steak, cooked medium rare. The fluffy bolsters of gnocchi were surprisingly not too heavy. Never one to complain about mushrooms, I loved my dish, and would have loved it more if it had a drizzle of truffle oil. The Angmoh’s steak arrived rare and well-charred and received his thumb’s up. He did find an overwhelming amount of caramelised onion over the steak, and would have preferred “a smattering” of it. I munched on his sweet potato chips, which were delightful. They were pillowy and dreamy, with a good balance of sweet and salty.

IMG_7755IMG_7758
(Left) Almond soufflé, blood peach yoghurt, honey ice cream $22
(Right) Poached rhubarb cookies, Cointreau, goats milk $17

For dessert, there was a choice of moving onto the counter to enjoy the famed dessert degustation. I was half tempted but wussed out in the end, ordering the rhubarb for myself and the almond soufflé for my man. I have a soft spot for rhubarb dessert and this did not disappoint. The tangy flavours of rhubarb shone through with the goats curd sorbet giving it a punch of refreshment. The almond soufflé was another winner. It was airy and light and chockers with real almond flavour. It paired so nicely with the honey ice cream.

IMG_7761
Mrs. Hive’s chocolate bar, peanuts, caramel $21

The Angmoh knows me and my dessert yearnings very well. I was also very keen to try the Mrs. Hive chocolate bar and didn’t think my rhubarb dish was quite enough. He ordered said dish on my behalf, so I wouldn’t appear to be the greedy oinker that I am. And thank the heavens we he did. It was an incredible concoction of rich silky chocolate mousse and luscious caramel, topped with a dollop of peanut butter sorbet. Oh yea, you heard right, peanut butter sorbet. It was the most ‘atas’ form of Snickers, period.

Our dinner at Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar ended on a sugar high. The food was good and the dessert amazing. The live vocals at the bar are impressive too and all in all it was one really pleasant night out. My only gripe was the lack of handwash in the ladies and disabled facilities. I had forgotten to mention it that night in my drunken stupor and eagerness to get to the chocolate bar, but dropped an email and have yet to receive a reply. So ladies, drag your men or girlfriends here for a night of sinful indulgence and do pack some hand sanitiser or wet wipes in your purse first.

1 Comment

Filed under Australian, Crown Casino, Modern, Southbank, Steak, Sweets