Archive | Fine Dining RSS feed for this section

Icebergs

4 Aug

A trip to Bondi wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the iconic Icebergs.

And with that view – it’s not hard to see why.

I was thrilled when the waiter presented me with a vegetarian menu with vegan options, brilliant!

I wasn’t starving (okay, whilst waiting at the bar for our table I snacked on polenta chips with aioli and mixed olives but shhh) so I just ordered the spaghetti with olive oil, chilli, garlic and basil.

Spaghetti

It was lucky I wasn’t starving because the food took quite a while to come out.

That being said I enjoyed my spaghetti.

I also shared the special with Mum which was a truffle, mushroom and bocconcini (I think…I can’t remember exactly which cheese it was!) frittata which was really delicious.

Frittata

I also want to point out how exceptional the service was.

Our waiter went to extra efforts to make sure we were always happy and at the end called our taxi, walked us out to the cab, opened the door from us and sent us off with a wave and a smile – now that’s customer service.

Great for a long, boozy lunch or an elegant dinner. Just make sure you book!

Vegetarian options: 10/10
Food: 7.5/10
Decor/interior: 9/10
Service: 9/10

Icebergs Dining Room and Bar on Urbanspoon

Advertisements

Quay

25 Jul

So I headed to Sydney the other weekend and boy oh boy, the food sure is good up north!

I managed to visit some pretty awesome restaurants whilst I was there, including the best restaurant in Australia according to the San Pellegrino 100 Best Restaurants in the World list.

When a restaurant receives such an honour, I’m not going to lie, you go into the meal with a helmet on your head to protect it from being blown away.

Lame pun, I know, but you know what I mean.

Anyway so as I’ve said before, you can never expect too many vegetarian options when eating fine dining. But usually there are a few entrees, sides and maybe a main if you’re lucky.

At Quay, you can either pick from the degustation menu (which can be done vegetarian, but at $220 a head felt a tad excessive) or you select the 3 course or 4 course menu option, which involves picking a dish from each course.

One of the three choices of bread available

3 course didn’t include dessert so naturally I went for the 4 course delight.

There was a vegetarian option in each course which made it handy to order.

We were all given a gorgeous tasting at the start. I can’t remember what mine had in it (sorry!) but I do remember it being delicious…

Taster

For my starter I had the “Salad of pickled rhubarb, endive, beetroot, purple carrot, rosa radish, kohlrabi, sheeps milk curd, pomegranate molasses, violets” phew! Don’t feel alone if you don’t know what half of the ingredients are I am listing, just trust me that they taste damn good!

First Course

Tangy, mild, sweet and creamy – it was just gorgeous!

For the next course I was given the “Organic heirloom carrots, cumin, fennel & celery seeds, comté-infused curd, almonds, amaranth.”

Second Course

The carrot puree was to die for. It was lighter than air and complimented every flavour alongside it whilst melting in my mouth.

My main was the “Roasted new season chestnuts, grain, nut & seed risotto, truffle cream.”

Main Course

It wasn’t exactly what I expected as I was preparing for a creamy, heavy risotto a la Tutto Benne in Melbourne.

Instead the flavour was extremely nutty, obviously due to the chestnuts, and it was gritty.

This, let me make it clear, does not mean I didn’t enjoy it any less! I had never had such a risotto and I really enjoyed it.

Now for dessert. I ordered the famous “Guava & custard apple snow egg.”

Dessert!

My mouth salivates just thinking of it! It was unlike any dessert I’d ever had. I enjoyed it immensely. I have to stop talking about it. I want it now!

Dessert

So all in all, I didn’t need my helmet (afterall, it’s impossible for your mind to ACTUALLY be blown from eating food) but this doesn’t mean I didn’t absolutely love everything I was served.

The staff were attentive and friendly and the views of the harbour were phenomenal.

It is costly. So casually heading to Quay for lunch might be a stretch.

It is well worth a special birthday or event!

Vegetarian options: 4/10
Food: 9/10
Decor/interior: 9/10
Service: 8/10

Quay on Urbanspoon

The Italian

19 Jul

My boyfriend and I headed to the famous Melbourne eatery “The Italian” for his birthday lunch.

I had heard great things about this place so was excited to give it a try.

Not surprisingly given it’s a fine dining restaurant, there were few vegetarian options.

For my entree I ordered the caprese salad –> tomato, basil and buffalo mozzarella

Caprese Salad

And for my main I selected the “roast butternut pumpkin ravioli with sage cream and ameretti”

Ravioli

My boyfriend and I shared sides of chips with aioli and the rocket, fennel and parmesan salad.

Chips

Rocket salad

I underestimated how generous the servings would be (I usually find fine dining portion sizes are quite small) and we committed the sin of over ordering and being unable to finish all of our food.

With this being said, everything I ordered was gorgeous and tantalising.

I loved every meal that emerged, including the bread with olive oil and olives at the start.

A meal like this isn’t complete without dessert.

So we shared the Vanilla panna cotta with strawberries, blueberries and mint and the Crème brûlée – needless to say they were both creamy, indulgent and melted in my mouth.

Crème brûlée

Vanilla Panna Cotta

 

The Italian is an institution and it’s not hard to see why.

The service was attentive and friendly (without being pretentious) and the atmosphere was relaxing.

I will definitely be back when I can!

Vegetarian options: 4/10
Food: 8.5/10
Decor/interior: 9/10
Service: 8/10
The Italian on Urbanspoon

Rockpool Bar & Grill

29 May

Winner of pretty much every food award ever invented in Australia, you don’t need me to tell you how amazing (and pricy, the prices you expect to pay at fine dining restaurants!) Rockpool is. I’ll leave that to the real food critics.

However the vegetarian foodies out there might appreciate a review of the vegetarian choices, so here I go.

Rockpool is renowned for its steak. Veg heads: try not to turn back the way you came when you are walking into the restaurant and rumps of meat are hanging in the windows. Persevere. You are catered for!

My delicious glass of red recommended by the barman

There are a few vegetarian options in each section of the menu, as well as a few items on the menu the chefs are happy to modify without the meat.

However I have been about five times to Rockpool and I must say each time I go there are less and less vegetarian options.

I decided to share with mum. For starters we ordered the Jerusalem Artichoke and Cauliflower Cream Soup with Mushroom and Gruyere Toast and the Wood Fire Grilled Vegetables with Tzatziki.

The soup was magnificent and PERFECT for a cold Melbourne day.

Jerusalem Artichoke and Cauliflower Cream Soup with Mushroom and Gruyere Toast

It was creamy and delicate and I loved the flavour of the artichoke (my new favourite vegetable). However I must say I couldn’t really taste the cauliflower.

It came with a mushroom toast which unfortunately was soggy by the time it came out after soaking the soup up.

This being said, when I go again and if the soup is still on the menu I would definitely order this again.

We also shared the grilled vegetables with tzatiki which admittedly sounds mundane, however the Mediterranean veggies that featured (peppers, zucchini, tomato, eggplant and leaks) were grilled to perfection – moist and soft.

Woodfired Grilled Vegetables w Tzatziki

The tzatziki sauce and olive oil transformed the simple dish into a delicious starter.

For the main we decided to order the King Prawns with Goats Cheese Tortellini, Burnt Butter, Raisins and Pine Nuts (Mum took the prawns) in a main size as well as share some sides of onion rings, mash potato and potato and cabbage gratin.

Goats cheese tortellini

Goats cheese tortellini – melts in your mouth. The homemade pasta combined with the raisins and pine nuts makes this a simple, yet hearty dish that leaves you more than satisfied when finished!

The onion rings are a personal favourite, especially when I ask for a side of aioli with it. MUST order.

Note to self: sides are delicious, but your stomach just simply can't eat ALL of that food!

All in all, it IS possible to be a vegetarian and eat at Rockpool and the veg options are delicious, which is great considering at the end of the day it is primarily a steak restaurant. Just keep in mind veg heads, you are not spoilt for choice.

P.S this is at the bottom of the menu, found it rather interesting!

Would I go back? Yes
Vegetarian selection: 3.5-4/10
Food: 9/10
Decor/interior: 9/10
Service: 7/10

Rockpool Bar and Grill on Urbanspoon