Browsing Tag

restaurant review

Wok on Inn, The Rocks

Reviews January 6, 2014

I was recently invited along to Wok On Inn at the Rocks to sample some of their dishes.

Funnily enough I actually spent several months working at a friend’s company a few minutes’ walk away, so it was a good opportunity to visit one of my old haunts.

Please note that I was served ‘half size’ dishes, so expect a larger size for yourself when you visit. Given this in mind I would expect that double sizes of the dishes I sampled would be quite massive and filling!

7 Comments

Muse Restaurant, Hunter Valley

Reviews July 10, 2013

A recent girly weekend away to the Hunter Valley with some food blogger pals resulted in a hunt for somewhere special for dinner. Chanel from Cats Love Cooking suggested Muse Restaurant (where she held her wedding reception no less!) and off we went to share a truly memorably dinner.


Amuse bouche for the evening, parmesan custard with mushroom duxelles, thyme and porcini dust.


Red Gate Farm Quail with Pumpkin Risotto, pure maple, bleu de basque and a soft boiled quail egg.

There were some pretty good things on my entree plate on this evening! The stand-out element was definitely the quail’s breast. It was seasoned really well and was cooked to perfection. My accompanying quail’s egg had a perfect runny yolk which made a lovely rich sauce to dip the breast in. Definitely a good start to the meal and was surprisingly large for an entree size, not that I was complaining ;).


Beetroot with binnorie goats cheese, coppersfolly wasabi, buttered king brown mushrooms.


Cured Ocean Trout with congo potato, olive, bacon aioli, grapefruit and dill.


Palate cleanser, ruby grapefruit sorbet with fresh apple and baby coriander.

This palate cleanser was a lovely little freshener between courses. The ruby grapefruit flavours went really well with the crrrunch of the freshly diced apple. I especially loved the addition of the baby coriander which gave it a lovely kick.


Blue Eye Trevalla with buttered mushrooms, pencil leek, miso dressing, mizuna.

This was my main for the evening and I absolutely loved it. Two tender, perfectly cooked fish fillets (honestly is there anything better than a piece of damn well-cooked fish??) that were sooo silky and just melted in your mouth. The fish was accompanied with a good handful of incredibly flavoursome mixed mushrooms and finished with a sweet miso sauce which matched everything on the plate so beautifully. An incredibly memorable dish that I would order again and again. Don’t be deceived by the photo – this was actually an incredibly large main, even though it looks small in the photo. This is because of the way it spread out on the plate – which was incredibly massive. Biggest plate I’ve eaten off, haha. It was actually so filling I very sadly failed to completely finish my second fish fillet – but this should just let you know how large the entree and mains I had were! We also added side dishes, which I really enjoyed, but I don’t think were necessary as my meal was so big!


Mandagery Creek Venison smoked in Barrel Shavings with white, red and black cabbage, blackberry, juniper and pedro ximenez.


Slow cooked Milly Hill lamb with celeriac, charred apple, mint, horseradish and jus.


Side dish of roasted butternut pumpkin.


Pre-dessert for the night: Coconut cloud (coconut cream with a simple sugar syrup, aerated and then frozen) with crushed candied violets and lime.

OH MY GOODNESS I wish this was on the dessert menu! We absolutely loved it – light and coconut creamy goodness paired with lime and crushed candied violet. Incredible.


Deconstructed Vanilla Crème Brûlée with caramelised white chocolate, salted date, hazelnut, coffee and brown butter.

I just loved the gorgeous presentation of this dish, especially the lovely glass plate it was plated on, which had such a pretty border.


Chai and Matcha tea doughnuts with apple, binnorie quark custard and vanilla.


Nitro White Chocolate Ice Cream and Raspberries, whipped, fresh, dehydrated.


Warm dark chocolate mousse, minted cream, gingerbread, torte and shiso.

I had a spoonful of this chocolate mousse and minty cream and it was riiiich. The mint cream was a good balance for it but I think it also would have been nice with a creamier but less sweet element to balance it more. This would be a good dessert to share between two people because it’s so rich. The gingerbread also gave this dessert a nice textural element.


Petit fours, chocolate macarons and salted caramel chocolates.


A lovely group of dining companions. 🙂

It had been awhile since I’ve had a meal this fancy and this really reminded me how much I enjoy fine dining. There’s something about the ambience, the great service and of course the sublime food that is such an enjoyable and special experience.

Muse Restaurant & Café
Hungerford Hill Wines
Broke Rd, Pokolbin NSW 2320
musedining.com.au

Opening Hours
Wednesday-Saturday for dinner 6.00-10.00pm
Café open 7 days 10.00am-5.00pm

If you’re looking for convenient nearby accommodation to Muse Restaurant and Café, we stayed at the Hunter Valley Crowne Plaza. It was only a couple minutes drive away and close to plenty of other great Hunter Valley attractions (i.e. chocolate & cheese shops and wineries!)

Special thanks goes to Chanel from Cats Love Cooking for introducing me to such a wonderful restaurant and JJ from 84th and 3rd for helping light food photos in the swanky romantic lighting of Muse Restaurant with the aid of an iPhone!

Muse Restaurant and Cafe on Urbanspoon

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here 🙂

13 Comments

Brickworks Brasserie, Hunter Valley

Reviews June 30, 2013

This weekend I was lucky enough to spend time away some with lovely food bloggers for my first trip to the Hunter Valley and we ended up at Brickworks Brasserie for a quick dinner. 


Santa Fe Salad ; 
Chicken, corn, black beans, cheese (I asked for mine without cheese), tortilla strips, tomato, lettuce all tossed in a spicy peanut coriander dressing

Gotta say that this is one of my favourite salads I’ve ever had from a pub – texturally and flavourwise it has so much good stuff going on and the spicy peanut coriander dressing was ridiculously good! 


Vegetarian pizza ; Pumpkin, gorgonzola, sage and pine nut pizza.

Mushroom filo ; Fetta and pine nut stuffed mushroom, baked in filo pastry with zucchini and chickpea salad with capsicum dressing.

Chicken Parm, ; Chicken, ham, napoli sauce, parmesan and herb crumbs with a garden salad and razorback potatoes.


Mac and Four cheese with a garden salad & oregano sauce

Mac and four-cheese with bacon.

We loved our visit to Brickworks and would definitely recommend it for dinner with friends if traveling through the Hunter Valley 🙂 

There was plenty of parking available (handy for travelling in groups) and it’s a great place for a drink before or after dinner as well.

Brickworks Brasserie at Potters Hotel on Urbanspoon

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here 🙂

19 Comments

Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice

Reviews June 3, 2013

On planning my recent trip away to Singapore and Japan, I was happy to see a post on ChopinandmySaucepan’s food blog detailing a recent experience at Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice in Singapore. Having only visited there once on a layover as a child, I was happy to put something so delicious-looking on my must-eat list. Plus, with Anthony Bourdain touting Tian Tian as his favourite spot to eat Hainanese chicken, I didn’t really need much more convincing.

(vid above) Anthony Bourdain enjoying Hainanese chicken rice at Tian Tian.

Admittedly I had very little experience with Hainanese chicken rice in Sydney. I remember first ordering it in Chatswood at an Asian food court and was somewhat disappointed. The rice was bland and flavourless, the chicken dried out and nothing special at all. I couldn’t really see what all the fuss was about and so did not ever bother to order a second time. However, upon glancing upon Chopinand’s blog post about Tian Tian – I was immediately entranced by the glossy, gorgeously moist looking photos of luscious looking chicken and from that I was convinced that I had to give Hainanese chicken a second try.

One of the reasons I was so excited to visit Singapore is because of its insane cleanliness. As a kid, my mum put the fear of God into me about street food (which everyone knows is the best stuff!) and so I was never allowed to sample any on our family trips to the Philippines (much to my disappointment). Even now as an adult, I hear my mum’s voice echoing every time I have the opportunity to sample some tasty but potentially dodgy-looking street food while travelling. Fortunately Singapore solves this issue by displaying mandated signs pretty much everywhere food is served, which lets you know what sort of grade (A, B, C or D) their establishment has received from their National Environment Agency. You can’t really get much more reassuring than that. Plus the fact that everywhere in Singapore is so unbelievably spick and span makes me think that their kitchens have just as high a standard of cleanliness. So given this, Singapore is pretty much my dream destination – my one opportunity to safely gorge myself on as much cheap and delicious street food as possible!


Hainanese Chicken Rice, $3.50 SGD. Comes with their famous chilli sauce and dark soy sauce and a bowl of chicken broth (not pictured).


Why not grab a frosty glass of sugar cane juice?


Or a melon-soy smoothie?

So the verdict?

Tian Tian’s Hainanese chicken was without a doubt the best chicken rice I have ever had (including several other restaurants we sampled whilst in Singapore). 

The chicken was so unbelievably packed with moist, juicy flavour and the chicken rice was incredibly good. There were plenty of sauces and condiments to add to the dish, but it was SO good that I ate about 3/4 of it before I even remembered they came with it – and to be honest it didn’t really need it. It just tasted so damned good by itself.

With a price of $3.50 SGD per plate, it’s almost embarrassingly cheap (especially for Sydney-siders!). For chicken this good, I would expect to pay three to five times the amount in Sydney, should anyone ever master Hainanese chicken the way they have at Tian Tian.

It’s a shame that I only visited Singapore for three days. Had I stayed for longer, or come to the Maxwell Food Centre earlier, I definitely would have visited Tian Tian on more than one occasion! I definitely will be looking for my Hainanese chicken fix in Sydney. Here begins the quest to find something that’s nearly as good as Tian Tian’s!

xox
C

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here 🙂

17 Comments

Hothis Indian Cuisine, Epping

Reviews December 3, 2012

Plain naan bread

I don’t usually do reviews on my weekday lunches. I tend to save my blog posts for nicer dinners out and my fave dessert recipes. However, I do actually eat out quite a lot during the week while at work, usually due to my lack of organisation to pre-plan my lunches, but also when friends visit me at the office.

Admittedly Epping (where I work) is not exactly a restaurant hub like closer suburbs (Eastwood, for example). It’s certainly got nothing on the wonderful restaurants in the city, but it does have a few worthwhile options that I frequent every now and again!

I thought I’d start out with what is quickly becoming one of my favourites – Hothis Indian Cuisine: conveniently located a few spots down from the famed Beschico. I honestly don’t eat Indian food very often. I find that it is difficult to find a good enough place to visit regularly unless you have a recommendation from a friend. Hothis was recommended to me by an ex-colleague who used to visit there every now and again. I tried it once and was hooked from the get-go! Not only is the food great but it’s also ridiculously cheap, which is a plus factor.

Selection of curries at Hothis

Unfortunately, Hothis has very limited lunch hours and only opens for lunch twice during the week, on Thursdays and Fridays (11.30am-2.00pm), so is more targeted towards the dinner crowds (being open from Monday to Saturday, 4.30-8.30pm). However, since I only visit occasionally, I save my Thursdays for Hothis. Whenever I visit, it tends to be very quiet on the inside but this is not a reflection of how good the food is! Takeaways seem to be more popular than eat-ins and I quite like eating in for a quieter atmosphere.

Inside Hothis

As a food blogger I must admit my shameful truth – I only ever order the same thing when I visit Hothis. I do personally tend to pick food favourites when revisiting my fave restaurants (whereas I imagine most other food bloggers are far more adventurous and experimental when it comes to choosing different meals when eating out) – but let me just say that, at Hothis, the dishes I pick really are that good. I look over the rest of the available curries whenever I visit and they all look so tempting but I know how good my faves are and, well… I just can’t go past them. Do you, dear readers, do the same? I’d love to know what your fave dishes for eating out are, so I can give them a try too!

Mango Lassi
Mango Lassi, $2.90 (plain lassis are slightly cheaper at $2.70)

Vegetable samosa
Vegetable samosa (spiced peas and potatoes in pastry, deep fried), served with raita, (a cucumber and yoghurt sauce), $2.00

Two curries with rice and naan
Garlic naan with rice, Vegetable Korma and Eggplant and Potato Curry (Two curries plus naan and rice for $7.90)

Two different curries with rice and naan
Plain naan with rice, Lamb Rogan Josh (mild) and Mango Chicken (mild) ($7.90)

Dhal and curry on rice
Dhal, potato and eggplant curry piled lovingly on rice – medium size. $7.70

Here it is – my favourite combination of all time to order at Hothis! The dhal is perfectly spiced and richly flavoured. I often forget how amazing lentils are until I have a big spoonful of this… and then I remember – they can be very, very good.

Out of the two though, I have to say my ultimate favourite is the potato and eggplant curry for sure. I love eggplant so, so much and this does it justice. It is cooked so well that it is tender and silky and pairs well with the soft potatoes that are unbelievably flavoursome. It just melts in your mouth – if curry is even capable of such a thing. I know it looks rather messy and not too pretty – but then, so me of the best foods really are like that, aren’t they?

Hothis menu
Hothis extras menu
Hotis lunch specials
Lunch specials.

Hothis is a cheap and cheerful place that is great to visit for a weekday lunch (on Thursdays and Fridays) and, I’m sure, dinner takeaways. I absolutely love the dhal and potato/eggplant curry and also am a sucker for the crispy, flaky samosas with their flavoursome insides which go well with the tart raita sauce to balance the rich flavours of the samosa.

Since their vegetarian food is such high quality, this place is definitely suitable for veggie lovers! Despite my love of their dhal and potato/eggplant curry, I must admit that the lamb rogan josh, mango chicken, butter chicken and chicken tikka all have me very tempted! It is also an incredibly cheap place to eat for lunch – and the prices are still very good for dinner takeaways or eat ins – much cheaper than a lot of other Indian restaurants I have visited.

Those looking for parking, I would advise parking in the Coles Epping carpark which is located on Rawson Street and has free parking for two hours. You can then walk through the arcade that links Rawson Street to Beecroft Road and walk up to Hothis from there. If you’re feeling like something sweet afterwards, then good news! A YogurBerry has very recently opened up just a shop or two next to Hothis for those looking for their next froyo fix! I’m so addicted – I think I need to check into froyo rehab…

Some extra trivia:
Hothis cooks all their dishes in pure polyunsaturated vegetable oil using no animal fats with natural herbs and spices. Their food does not contain any artificial preservatives or MSG.

Hothis Indian Cuisine
Address: 46 Beecroft Road, Epping
Phone: 9869 0997
Website: hothis.com.au Website Coming Soon
Email: info@hothis.com.au

Hothi's Indian Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Another week is gone! Only 3-4 more weeks until Christmas, woohoo!!

xoxo
C

20 Comments

L’Accanto, Sorrento

Reviews October 8, 2012

Sunset at L'Accanto

When a friend of mine and I were picking the ins and outs of our Italian trip earlier this year, we both agreed that it was imperative that we find somewhere to have a fancy dinner. Since we’re both die-hard foodies, it wasn’t a difficult decision to make!

There were so many choices on Tripadvisor and online recommendations, but laziness (or exhaustion, post exploring the ruins of Pompeii) got the better of us and we decided to stay in and have dinner at our fancy hotel. L’Accanto was awarded a Michelin star in 2010, which made the decision all the easier as I had never had the opportunity to dine at a Michelin star restaurant before!

We had chosen the Grand Hotel Angiolieri in Sorrento on the Amalfi Coast of Italy due its outstanding reviews on Tripadvisor as well as the extraordinarily reasonable room prices we found on lastminute.com.au. Plus it’s rated 5 stars! Turns out we made a good choice, as the hotel was so wonderful, we found ourselves extending our stay by an extra night on our tightly packed trip.

The setting for the dinner was worth a million bucks. Picture this – a warm and balmy Italian summer afternoon while the sun slowly sets over Mount Vesuvius and later watching the stars light up the sky. I’ve never had a meal with such an absolutely spectacular view before and I think I will be hard pressed finding somewhere that will beat it!

Now enough gushing and onto the important stuff – the food!

We start with the biggest amuse bouche I’ve possibly ever had.

Amuse bouche from L'Accanto
Cured fish, deep fried cheese stuffed zucchini flower (AMAZEBALLS) and marinated shrimp. You can’t go wrong with deep fried zucchini cheesy flowers in my books and this was no exception. The cured fish was tender to the bite and had a lovely silky texture. I don’t eat shrimp but my dining partner was more than happy to take this off my hands!

Whipped butter from L'Accanto
Whipped butter topped with nuts to accompany our starter breads.

Bread from L'Accanto
Various breads – all very moreish. Sourdough, tomato, some with olive and herb, breadsticks (seaweed and cheese – very good!) This was such a huge selection and it was hard not to plough through everything quickly and get too full before our entrees!


Shared entree between the two of us – the buffalo plate. Buffalo cheese and meats cooked different ways €20
Such pretty presentation! Each bite of these delectable morsels was a tantalizing beginner to the rest of the meal leaving us wanting more, more, more!

Now moving onto the mains!

Chicken from L'Accanto
Free range baby spring chicken with fried cheese and jus (€20).

I loved this combination of the tender chicken with the richness of the crisp fried cheesy goodness and the flavorsome sauce, and how cute is the presentation!? Just so beautifully plated!

Pork belly from L'Accanto
Another winning dish was this gorgeously plated crisp pork belly with jus and tomato chutney (€20).

Really loved photographing this pretty main. (Is it weird how pretty I find food? That could be slightly weird… lol.)

Vanilla ice ream from L'Accanto
(Pre-dessert) Vanilla ice cream rolled in mini meringues in a berry soup. Loved the contrast between the crunchy meringues with the creamy icecream and sweetness of the berry soup. We loved this!

Apologies for the pics – as the sun set, it became increasingly more difficult to get good photos without flash!

Raspberry macaron from L'Accanto
Raspberry macaron, white Ivoire chocolate soup, wild strawberries and champagne sorbet, walnut crumbs (€14).

The crisp and soft interior of the raspberry macaron was delectable combined with the tart sorbet and creamy sweet white chocolate soup (which was like a thin chocolate ganache).

Citrus fruits from L'Accanto
Citrus fruits: Sfusato lemon “Delizia”, grenadine orange, limoncello mousse, warm citrus pie, grapefruit sorbet (€12).

This dessert was a lovely cruise through Italian citrusy desserts – each with their own zesty twist. I think my favourite was the limoncello mousse (in the shot glass) which imparted a nice touch of warmth with that yummy mousse texture I just love!

We were quite full at this point, but we decided to be extra naughty and order a third dessert… Well, why not? 😉

There wasn’t a proper description on the menu for this last dessert – it was only listed as ‘Selection of Valrhona chocolate’, so we got the impression that this item was a small selection of chocolates, something like tiny petit fours or a fancy version of Roses or similar. The first sign of its size probably should have come from the waiter’s mouth dropping open in surprise at our request for yet another dessert, but we brushed it off. Did this guy think we couldn’t hack it a couple more chocolates?? Haha.

Valrhona chocolate from L'Accanto
Selection of Valrhona chocolate (€16 See, the price probably should have given it away too. Whoops!)

This was an assortment of chocolate mousses, icecreams, sauces, a chocolate fondant and a decadent chocolate muesli bar. I’ll be honest it was hard to plow all the way through this but I think we did a fairly good job! Despite how full we were, we could still appreciate chocolatey goodness of each and every treat on our plate. I particularly liked the mousses, gooey chocolate pud and the icecream. I was too full to even try a bite of the muesli bar but my dining companion described it as the best muesli bar she had ever tried – a pretty good recommendation!

Molten pudding from L'Accanto
Total food porn shot of the chocolatey amazingness of the molten pud.

View from L'Accanto overlooking Mt Vesuvius
Our view with dinner – Mount Vesuvius in all its glory… Does it get any better than this?

Seagull at L'Accanto
Cheeky seagull who kept swooping the tables for noms. The waiters had to keep shooing them away… Guess that’s gonna happen when you’re up high with tasty food! Hehe.

View at L'Accanto
Love that view!

Christine at L'Accanto
I think this smile says it all.

Dinner at L’Accanto was definitely one of the most memorable parts of my Italy trip and is definitely one of the most unforgettable meals of my life. The food was stunning and that view was just simply breathtaking! I would love to return again one day to relive this spectacular evening – especially with a partner. This setting is perfect for a romantic night, or even a proposal!

I particularly loved the style of the dishes, from the bread starter to the buffalo plate and the citrus and chocolate desserts – it was a fun way to experience the dishes by sampling the main ingredients all cooked in a different manner. A very unique and enjoyable way to experience fine dining. I also really liked the plating of each dish – everything was so artfully put together and very fun to photograph, and it just added to the awesomeness of the evening.

Some more info…
L’Accanto also offer a degustation menu for those who are so inclined.

Check out:

Pastry chef: Christian Izzo
Executive chef: Vincenzo Guarino
Restaurant manager: Nando Papa
Sommelier: Nicoletta Gargiulo

Thanks for stopping by!

xoxo

C

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here. 🙂

58 Comments

Captain’s High Tea at the Stamford Grand, North Ryde

Reviews September 17, 2012

I have high tea on the brain at the moment. Prior to this visit to the Stamford Grand, I had only been to high tea once before, at the QVB Tea Rooms and that was well over a year ago. But lately, for no particular reason at all; I can’t seem to get my mind off high tea. The gorgeous little pastries and cakes! The lovely setting! Getting a good chance to feel all fancy, girly and chat with some girlfriends – what could be more appealing to a lady? 😉

Luckily for me, there are many choices out there for those wanting to attend a high tea – and thank goodness for Sydney food bloggers helping to make decisions so much easier by giving me a couple of reviews to choose from!

Since this visit to high tea, I have also purchased an online groupon to visit Boronia House in Mosman for High Tea and I’m rather excited to meet up with some Sydney food bloggers at the #RealTeaParty quite soon organised by LoveSwah. Thusly bringing my end total of high tea visits up to a grand total of 4! 🙂

Since my work colleagues and I work in the North West of Sydney, the Stamford Grand at North Ryde was a great choice for us – very close, has free parking and as a bonus is a little cheaper ($30 per person Monday-Friday or $35 on the weekend) than some other high tea establishments at the city which normally start at around $40 a head.


A tray stacked with goodies to share between two lovely ladies (or gentlemen, or both!)


Two freshly baked scones each – one raisin and one plain.
Served with prettily piped whipped King Island double cream and traditional homemade strawberry jam
These were lovely and warm and yummy with the jam and cream – scones are always one of my favorite parts of high tea 🙂


Second plate of sweets – with lemon curd tarts, chocolate strawberry cups, gateau opera (chocolate pastry with layers of almond biscuit, chocolate ganache and coffee butter cream) and passionfruit cheesecake (a light passionfruit fruit cream cheese with vanilla sponge)

Super cute lemon curd tart – sweet pastry filled with almond and lemon cream, topped with a toasted meringue

Loved this pretty little chocolate cup filled with diced strawberries and topped with vanilla whipped cream


Finger sandwiches shared between two. Smoked salmon and dill sour cream, cucumber and cream cheese, coronation chicken (with raisins and curried mayo), eggs and chives.


Spiced potato wedges served with sweet chilli and sour cream
(separately ordered side dish) $8.00

Tea selections available with Captain’s High Tea
The Original Earl Grey
Pure Chamomile Flowers
Ceylon Young Hyson Green Tea
Pure Peppermint Leaves
Brilliant Breakfast

Coffee selections available with Captain’s High Tea
if you’re not in a tea drinking mood!
Espresso
Cappuccino
Latte
Flat White
Long Black
Macchiato
Decaf Coffee
*please note the above espresso coffees are available at an additional charge of $2.50 per order

Stamford Grand offer a gluten free version of their Captain’s High Tea at no extra charge. They also offer a selection of sparkling wine and champagne if you’re interested in fancying your High Tea up that extra notch. There is also a small range of savoury options you can order on the side if you’re feeling a little bit peckish for some savoury treats (includes dishes such as wedges, duck spring rolls, satay sticks, curry puffs and calamari).

All in all I had a great time at the Captain’s High Tea and will definitely return some time in the future. Good value for money, with a good selection of sweet treats, decent service and big points for the free parking lot (which makes getting there a total breeze!) I communicated with one of the staff members in regards to my booking via email and they were very prompt and extremely helpful in their replies – another big plus.

The only thing I feel they could have improved on was probably the ambience/decor – we were served the high tea in more of a restaurant/cafe style setting – which was totally fine, but probably less high tea themed than I normally imagine. I do so love stepping into the QVB Tea Rooms and others where you’re served in just the most stunning rooms!

Hope you all had a lovely relaxing weekend filled with delicious things 🙂

Here’s to another week ahead – the countdown to next weekend beginneth yet again!

xoxo
Christine

Captain Cook's Cove at The Stamford Grand on Urbanspoon

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here. 🙂

39 Comments

Seven Lanterns, Sylvania

Reviews September 11, 2012

After hearing rave reviews about 7 Lanterns on Not Quite Nigella’s blog and reading amazing reviews on Eatability (as well as being listed as number 2 of the best restaurant listing in Sydney), I couldn’t wait to go and give 7 Lanterns a try. How incredibly honored I felt when the lovely owner, David emailed me and asked me to come along and visit his restaurant.

7 Lanterns have two degustation options – the Royale ($55 per person) and Lanterns ($70 per person). You can also order A La Carte if you’re only hungry for a few course, although to be honest, I would highly recommend the degustation menu as it gives you a good sampler of all the deliciousness at 7 Lanterns, and I found that the serving sizes of all the dishes were absolutely perfect. Plus, priced at $55 and $70 per person, you can’t get more of a bargain for a degustation in this town!

Many the time I come away from degustation feeling overly stuffed and almost slightly ill which kind of wrecks the experience a tad; but it even says on the 7 Lanterns menu “All courses are portion controlled for comfortable eating for one” – and I found this to be very true! I came away feeling perfectly full but not too far over the edge – and it was a good feeling!


Beef Tataki
Seared and thinly sliced succulent Angus beef carpaccio with fresh vegetable strips, served with crushed nashi pear and soy ginger reduced garnish. (served as part of the Lanterns degustation, or ordered a la carte is 4 pcs for $18).
This was a great start to the meal. The crunchy thin strips of vegies were encased by perfectly cooked beef and dressed in a lovely soy/ginger sauce that just melted in your mouth – a great blend of textures and flavours which piqued our appetite!



Atlantic Salmon Roll
Grilled premium Atlantic salmon fillet layered on top of California roll made with cooked tuna in Japanese ‘Cheese Mayo’ with avocado and cucumber. (part of the Royale degustation or you can order 4 pcs for $18.00 off the a la carte menu).
This dish deserves two photos – it was definitely the star of the night! It was a hard act to follow that Beef Tataki, but this was absolutely fantastic. The salmon was lightly torched and had a magnificent flavour that went well with the tuna, avocado and sushi rice – but the best partof the dish was the “cheese mayo” which was so addictive and it had me scraping my plate for moremoremore! I kept wishing I had gotten more than two pieces! It was such a good combination of smoky/sweet/creamy. Total winner. It was without a doubt, the best sushi I have ever had! I could go back and eat a massive roll of this… and really, really want to. I know I’m gushing, but seriously – you need to try this sushi!


Peasant Chicken, or Dak Dori
Chicken breast and seasoned rissole medallions with Korean peasant style garlic, chilli, soy and onion reduction, served with a honey soy coated cocktail potato. (Served as part of the Royale degustation, or can be ordered a la carte for $28).
The owner, David told us a little about the history of this dish – it’s called “peasant” chicken because back in the days in Korea, the chicken breast (ironically now haha) was the cheapest part of the chicken – as it would dry out quickly in the cooking process. However, this was solved by home cooks rolling the chicken breast in juicier and more flavorsome chicken rissoles. Funny to think of chicken breast as being the cheaper cut of the meat as its now the most expensive part!

This dish was delicately spiced and was a nice contrast to the honey soy sauce and the inner part of the roulade infused the chicken breast with plenty of flavour.


Grilled Salmon served with Tom Yong Goon sauce
This was a special chef item off the menu. It was cooked so perfectly, it tasted almost buttery in that special way that only salmon can. The silky texture of the fish was further highlighted the creamy notes in the coconutty Thai inspired sauce in this very unique dish.

Teriyaki Chicken, or Dak Teriyaki
Chicken thigh fillet brine tenderised overnight, teppan grilled in 7 Lanterns Teriyaki sauce served with fresh & crispy green leaves with soy and ginger oriental dressing. ($22 ordered off the a la carte menu).
This was so melt in your mouth good. Probably some of the best chicken teriyaki I’ve ever had! You could definitely tell the chicken had been brined overnight – the meat was so unbelievably juicy! The chef grilled this to absolute perfection and I loved the smoky sweet flavours of the sauce with the meat. The salad leaves also provided a good balance to cut the richness of the meat – a perfectly lovely dish!

Imperial Beef Rib
Cross-cut beef rib marinated overnight in chunky garlic sesame and shallot, then slow cooked for hours in soy reduction & caramelised onion sweetened sauce served with steamed rice and ‘kim chi’. (Served as part of the Lanterns degustation or can be ordered a la carte for $32).
Picking between my faves of the night would definitely be a tough choice between the salmon sushi and this beef rib. Beef rib is one of my favorite dishes and the chef at 7 Lanterns definitely did this one justice. I love the smoky flavour that the Teppan grill imparted to all the dishes and this was no different – the meat fell away from the bone and was so juicy, tender and well paired with the soft rice and sweet caramelised sauce. I enjoyed every bite of this dish!



Chocolate Mousse Fondue drenched in warm white chocolate sauce served with chocolate curls.
(Served with Royale degustation or can be ordered a la carte).
Finally, moving onto the sweet part of the night and of course one of my personal faves – dessert!
This mousse was very much enjoyed by me and Mike which was a surprise – only because Mike is normally not a fan of mousse at all! (unlike me of course, heehee.) The pillowy soft chocolate mousse was encased in layers of chocolate and had some hidden raspberries snuggled away inside. The chocolatey factor was kicked up another notch with the white chocolate sauce and yummy chocolate curls – perfect for chocoholics like myself!


Sticky date pudding drenched in melting caramel sauce served with classic vanilla ice cream.
(Served with Lanterns degustation or can be ordered a la carte).
This was a lovely finish to the night and a great take on the classic sticky date pud. The pudding itself was lovely and soft to bite into and topped with a moreish sticky caramel sauce. The vanilla ice cream was a welcome addition to help cut through the sweetness of the caramel and there was a tiny disc of praline which added a lovely nuttiness to the dish.


Cute little sitting area near the bathroom


Clean and pretty bathrooms


Pretty flowers in the bathroom which adds a nice fresh touch


7 lanterns from the outside

Just loved this super cute little walkway into the restaurant

7 Lanterns is the perfect place for a romantic date night out but also suits family groups, birthdays and small to medium sized groups. We went on Father’s Day and there were plenty of kids enjoying the chefs awe-inspiring skills on the Teppan grill. I really enjoyed the atmosphere of the restaurant and David and his staff have done a fantastic job of creating a very relaxed and elegant style of fine dining.

I would also like to make a special mention of the service. David and all of the wait staff and even the chefs were so warm and friendly to each and every customer that walked through the door. You could tell each and every customer was well looked after and attended to and there was a very welcome vibe that just added a final touch of class to the restaurant.

The food as aforementioned through this post, was excellent quality and it was obvious that David and his team go to great care to select fresh produce of a very high standard to make their wonderful dishes. Our fave dishes of the night were the salmon sushi roll and the imperial beef rib – two must trys!

Parking is best on nearby streets – but the street right outside the restaurant and nearby fills up pretty quickly, so its best to park a few streets away (but you shouldn’t have to go too far.)

A big thank you to David and his staff for a wonderful night – I would love to visit again!

7 Lanterns
14 Princes Highway, Sylvania
9522 2422

Seven Lanterns on Urbanspoon

Wanna keep in touch? Why not like me on Facebook by clicking here, or follow me on Twitter by clicking here. 🙂

Christine (cookingcrusade.com) dined as a guest of David, the owner of 7 Lanterns.
If you’re interested in inviting Cooking Crusade along to review your restaurant, please shoot us an email on christine@cookingcrusade.com

Thanks for reading and hope you’re all having a wonderful start to the week!

xoxo
Christine

30 Comments