Thursday, October 4, 2012

Birthday 2012 - Bathers' Pavilion

Don't really have much time to write long and detailed reviews anymore these days but I still like to share some pretty looking food photos. Went to Bathers' Pavilion for my birthday this year. Left the little monster to my mum and best friend who came from overseas (I felt little bit bad though.. they came from overseas and I made them my babysitters). So Robin and I had a really good dinner that night. 

Amuse bouche. I think it was smoked trout something something. Baby brain. So if it's not on the menu, I probably can't remember it even if you get the waiter to repeat it 3 times :p 

Robin wanted to try something different. Something that he doesn't usually order - Brandade soup with smoked eel and roe
potato skins, cranberries and watercress. 

For my entree, I had the Galantine of quail, foie gras and leek ash confit leg, verjuice jelly, mizuna. 

His main - Victorian lamb fillet with confit lamb breast globe artichokes, smoked yoghurt, baby turnips and seeds.
My main - Free range chicken with sea urchin butter, parsnip, baked apple and winter greens. Normally I'm not too keen on ordering chicken, but this time it's the sea urchin butter that got me. Very interesting butter, it's rich and creamy but I probably couldn't tell if I didn't know it's sea urchin. 

Robin's dessert - Vanilla panna cotta with pain perdu, honey nut crunch strawberry and yoghurt sorbet. I didn't get to try his dessert. Stomach wasn't too well that day so I didn't dare to stuff myself too much. 

I really really enjoyed my dessert! Mango cheesecake, pineapple cream and white meringue, passionfruit gel, tropical pearls. It tasted really good it was also lots of fun! I really liked the pineapple cream and meringue.. the tropical pearls were so much fun. They were like salmon roe with thin membrane outside and when bitten, tropical juice just burst inside the mouth. Lots of fun! Some might ask, where's the cheesecake? 

This round thing is the cheesecake! It's size of a big marble. When it was being served, the waiter said "this glossy ball is edible. Lots of people left them on the plate they probably thought it's plastic". It's so glossy that it really looked like plastic. Very cute. 

Just as well we didn't do the degustation, otherwise I wouldn't be able to have this dessert :) 

Bathers' Pavilion
4 The Esplanade
Balmoral Beach 2088
Tel: 02 99695050

Friday, March 9, 2012

momofuku seiōbo

I've read about momofuku quite a while ago. Been wanting to go since then and finally got my "excuse" to make a booking. My 2nd wedding anniversay :) Told Robin I'd take him to a restaurant that he's never been and kept it a surprise till we're there. Good to have nice sister in law who didn't mind babysitting the little guy for us that night. We really enjoyed our night out. 
We got there early that day, so we sat at the bar for a little while. If you like coffee and if you like beer, here's something to try! Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout Japan - $14. I'm neither a coffee drinker nor a big fan of beer, so I didn't even try. Robin didn't really like it though. He said it was weird to combine the 2 drinks together. After a while when our table was ready, we were shown to our seats which were at the counter looking directly into their kitchen. 

First course, Snacks - nori, smoked potato, shiitake chip, mochi (clockwise from the top). This plate were for the both of us. How I wish I could have 2 pieces of everything. The plate did look a bit sparse, I wish they would fill it up. All of them would make great tv snacks :) Here are the zoomed in photos. 

Now, the main momofuku attraction for me. Steamed bun - pork belly, cucumber, boisin sauce. Sorry about the picture. It did not do the bun justice. I just couldn't wait to bite into it. The bun was so soft and fluffy. The pork was oh so tender. Together with the crunchy cucumber that added some bite to it and the sweet hoisin sauce, it was like the best bun ever!! All looked like very common ingredients, but together there was some magic that made it so incredible. I saw how they store the bun in a container in the kitchen, very very tempted to ask the chef to put a few in a doggy bag for me to bring home :p

Here's the Sea mullet with blood orange. Again, the chef had worked wonders here. I don't really know my fish market, but Robin said sea mullet is a very cheap fish. The chef had made it so amazing with the creativity to serve it with blood orange. 

Marron with fennel and dill. Very fresh marron nicely cooked. See the black blob of stuff at the back? Absolutely no idea what that blob of black stuff was but it was AWESOME. Didn't look very nice, but that was the BEST part on the plate. 

A very pretty looking dish of Beef with radish and fermented black bean. Can't see much of the beef here because it was covered under the vibrant slices of radish. I quite like this dish but Robin thought the combination didn't quite make sense. 

This was the Smoked eel with jerusalem artichoke and pink grapefruit. Again, combination of seafood with citrus. This was served with a bowl of eel broth. The intense flavour of the broth just made us wanted more. It didn't have a tiny bit of the seafood fishy taste in it. 

Mud crab with yorkshire pudding. Hmm.. babybrain strikes again! Can't remember much about the taste of this dish anymore. Only remember seeing the yorkshire puddings being made in the kitchen and wondering when would I get served these cute looking thingy. 

Egg with toasted rice and brown butter. Wobble wobble wobble~~~ Perfectly wobbly egg!! How awesome was that. Such simple ingredients yet such highly satisfying flavour. I was amazed how well the fragrant of the toasted rice go with the egg and butter. 

Pea agnolotti with parmesan and ham. I remember that white foam thingy. Again, funny looking component and absolutely no idea what it was. Creamy with a bit of spiciness in it. Very interesting foam. 

Mulloway with smoked roe and lettuce. Robin started eating his while I was still busy taking photos. He gave me a nudge n said "you better eat this now". Presentation wise it was rather ordinary, but the fish... so fresh so crispy. Even the lettuce was good. Nicely charred. For some reason the best part of all these dishes are those unknown components on the plate. There was some crispy crunchy stuff sprinkled all over the plate. I reckon those were the icing on the cake. Made the dish a whole level higher. 

Lamb neck with onions and mustard seeds. Lamb was nicely cooked. Very tender and juicy. Love those onions. They were actually very sweet. Great combination with the mustard for the lamb. 

This was a bit of a funny 1 for me. Pecorino with honey licorice and bee pollen. Never thought of eating cheese with honey. That's essentially what it was. I'm not sure to consider this a sweet or savoury. 

Now here's a funny looking dessert. Wattle seed, malt, crispy milk. No idea how they made the crispy milk skin, but it was so crispy it's like eating milk flavoured chips. 

Miso, cherries and black sesame. The only way I like my cherries is fresh. Not candied not poached, not anything. So I was a bit cautious about this. I tasted each component on its own and thought I didn't like it. So I decided to just gobble everything together and finish it since it's just tiny. Much to my surprise, everything suddenly just tasted so much better TOGETHER! Each component was vital. They just had to be there to complement each other to create this unique taste. It just wouldn't work without any of it. 

If I hadn't read about this restaurant before, I wouldn't be expecting this to end the meal - Pork Shoulder. While typically this would be a savoury dish, here, it was given the task of a dessert. Definitely sweet enough to qualify as a dessert, but not rich and heavy like a chocolate mud cake sort of thing. Kind of fun and messy though because no cutlery was given. EVERYONE had to use their hand for this haha.. What an experience :) 

Conclusion, very very very satisfied with this dinner. While the plating of the dishes wasn't as impressive as some other restaurants, it's definitely not a problem here because as soon as one tasted the dish, nobody would care how it looked like. Could also see that the chef got some very clever ideas with the dishes. 

Side note: Adriano Zumbo's dessert train was located right opposite and conveniently opens till 11pm. So what happened? I got myself 2 macarons from Zumbo haha.. Red was coke, green was mojito. Sorry about blurry photo again. I couldn't wait to bite into the macarons :p 

momofuku seiōbo
The Star
80 pyrmont street, level g ,
sydney, nsw 2009

PS. Reservations are to be made on their website and only 10 days in advance. Can't remember where I read about this, but I know new day is added at 10am each morning. So to make sure you get the day that you want, make sure you are in front of the computer 10 days prior and start hitting the refresh button from 9:59am (which was what I did). The seats do go out FAST. 

Thursday, January 5, 2012


First post of 2012!! Happy new year everyone!! Hope everyone had a good break :) I had a day off from being a mum so I decided to go to a restaurant in an area that I wouldn't want to go with a pram and a baby. That place is Newtown. We all know how "easy" it is to find a parking at Newtown. So on my day off, I went to Newtown with my friend to this Japanese restaurant that I have heard about quite a bit.

Green tea Noodle Salad - Green-tea noodles & fresh greens with soy onion dressing $14. This was quite nice. I really liked the dressing.

One thing the thing that I missed since I got pregnant was the sashimi. Now that I can eat anything and everything again, of course sashimi will be on the table :) Chefs Selection Sashimi Plate - Deluxe 18pcs of assorted fresh sashimi - $29. I think we really need Japanese restaurant of this kind of quality around the Shire. 

Fire Roll - 6 pcs of tuna rolls topped with spicy sauce & crunchy potato - $14.50.  Just thought I would try something a little bit different. I quite like the spicy sauce. The only problem was that they fell apart quite easily. 

This was something that I have never had in other Japanese restaurants. Japanese Gyu-suji Nikomi - Tender Wagyu beef tendon braised over night in miso stew
served in a clay hot pot (limited serves per day) - $21. This stew was very very tasty. Came with 2 slices of garlic bread which were so nice after dipping into the thick soup. Actually it wasn't really a soupy soup, it was more like thick yummy gravy :) 

Now this was the favourite of the day. 5 Seared ‘Aburi’ Sushi Plate - Deluxe 12pcs of delicately flame seared sushi - $34. I was told to order this if I ever get to visit this restaurant. So I did and I can understand why. It was sooooo gooood!!! As soon as I put a piece of them in my mouth, it was like O.M.G. Why can't I find something like this around the Shire? Now I need to go back to city everytime I want this. For all the girls who are planning to have a baby, DO NOT try this. You will not be able to resist eating this during pregnancy. 

Spider Roll - 6 pcs of crispy soft shell crab sushi rolls wrapped with finely sliced seasoned daikon radish - $14.50. First time I tried sushi wrapped up with daikon. It was quite interesting as the daikon added a bit of refreshing tartness to the sushi. Kind of like a lemon to fish and chips. 

That was a really really satisfying good meal. I really wish we have Japanese restaurants that serve food like this a bit closer to home. 

184 King St, 
Newtown, NSW 2042
Tel: 02 8095 9260