Tag Archives: Chocolate

Lûme

For my birthday, my wonderful husband surprised me with dinner at Lûme!   It’s been on my to eat list for a few months since opening with the big bang of “we’re going to be in the top 50 restaurants in the world” (paraphrased but you get the gist).  We went the day before the announcement about the change in ownership, with 2 of the 3 originals leaving to go overseas.  Not sure what this means for Lume, but none the less, here’s my review of the place.

Some things to note:

  • Amazing interior.  From the outside, you wouldn’t know that there was this beautiful restaurant with a open courtyard out the back hidden in the back.
  • Have faith:  you get very little info about what you’re eating and sometimes it gets a bit scary but in the end it all works out.
  • Matching wine = 1 bottle.  That’s a lot of wine.  We were there on a school night so I could not partake.  We did try the non-alcoholic match which was different (in a good way) and complimented the food nicely.

So without further ado, here’s what we ate…

Breakfast eel on burnt barley crumpetIMG_6692

Red summer fruit, dashi and citrusIMG_6693

Raw asparagus and calamari entrails warmed with saltbush butter – surprisingly the best dish of the night.IMG_6695

Emu tart with warm jersey milk and white geraniumIMG_6699

Pearl on the ocean floorIMG_6701

Flinders island lamb perfumed with cherry wood, rhubarb, hibiscus and roseIMG_6704

Red beet baked in La Sirene Praline, raw cocao vinegarIMG_6706

Sea corn and pork fatIMG_6708

Barbecue ice with raw yabby tail, shitake and lemon aspenIMG_6710

Dry aged duck dressed with sour mulberries and elderflower vinegar – stunningIMG_6717

Cauliflower cheese with a pastry smoked over pear woodIMG_6718

Lambs blood ganache rolled in maple oats, native apple jam and riberry pepperIMG_6721

Blackberries, blueberries and sour goat’s milkIMG_6722

Jarusalem artichoke, La Sirene Praline, caramelised apple and chamomileIMG_6724

Cacao pod from Maralumi with notes of tobacco, green banana and currants – the picture doesn’t do this justice.  It’s a very generous serve of chocolate delights.IMG_6729

 

For more info and reviews:
Lume Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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My love affair with Burch and Purchese

I’ve been having a love affair with Burch and Purchese ever since they opened back in 2012 and my brother in law brought home their Xmas edition Christmas cake.  After that, I was hooked.  I’d sneak out to B&P at least once a fortnight to indulge in their sweets.  Here are some of my favourites through the years…

I love the little desserts, where you can get the perfect portion…  All the fantastic flavours and textures…
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Love love love the in store displays…  from the whimsical Easter Eggs to the Alice in Wonderland display, all made from chocolate!

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Oh and the cakes!  My oh my…. I’m so enamoured by the cakes that the first thing I did when organising my wedding was to go to B&P and order a cake!   I love the layers and perfect combinations of sweet, savoury, salty, soft, mousey, crunchy, cakey.

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Without a doubt, this is my love letter to Burch and Purchese.  You complete me.

For more info:
Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio on Urbanspoon

Burch & Purchese – Cake Porn

Decided to post all the pics of all the super yummy cakes and chocolates I’ve seen and bought from Burch & Purchese.    These intricate yummy desserts have so many ingredients, that I’m not going to even attempt to list them out.  If you haven’t been there, do yourself a favour and get there ASAP!

Chocolate, mango, green tea, red velvet, ginger, raspberry, pistachio…   Enjoy the pics!

Special edition Xmas cakeIMG_0430IMG_0432 IMG_0600 IMG_0601

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Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio on Urbanspoon

Ten Minutes by Tractor

Ten Minutes by Tractor is a gorgeous winery with a modern restaurant facing the hillside in which the vines grow.  Was there in summer for my mom’s birthday dinner, and it was an outstanding meal all around.   Each course was matched with a perfect wine from the winery.  As you can see from the pics, the food was beautifully presented and tasted fantastic!

We started with an amuse bouche of tuna tartare.   A small bite that packed a punch – lovely soft tuna, crunchy zesty apple.   Gotta say, I loved the presentation and the spoon in which the tuna sat in.

Amuse Bouche

For entree, I had the “seared tuna with sesame and bean salad, spring onion yogurt“.  It was tasty and light.

seared tuna with sesame and bean salad, spring onion yogurt

My sister had the “charred mackerel with ratatouille, lemon creme fraiche, tomato vinaigrette” and my mom had the “beetroot cured king fish with beetroot, avocado snow, celery panacotta“.  I had a taste of both and they were superb.

charred mackerel with ratatouille, lemon creme fraiche, tomato vinaigrettebeetroot cured king fish with beetroot, avocado snow, celery panacotta

For main, I had the modestly described “duck & five spice with fig, soubise, duck jus“.   Putting it out there that this may be the best duck dish I’ve ever had.  The duck was juicy and moist, with crispy skin and the accompaniments went perfectly with the duck.

duck & five spice with fig, soubise, duck jus

My mom had the “Flinders Island wallaby with parsnip, slow roasted grapes and walnuts” whilst my sister had the “Cape Grim eye fillet with beetroot, heirloom carrots, parsley emulsion“.  Again, I had a taste of both and they were fantastic.

Flinders Island wallaby with parsnip, slow roasted grapes and walnutsCape Grim eye fillet with beetroot, heirloom carrots, parsley emulsion

Given the meal was quite rich, I opted for a light and fruity dessert.  The “strawberry medley with lime cake, lemon verbena and white chocolate espuma, meringue, strawberry ice cream” was perfect!   Sweet, citrusy, fruity and creamy.

strawberry medley with lime cake, lemon verbena and white chocolate espuma, meringue, strawberry ice cream

My sister chose the “chocolate chiboust with Michel Cluizel chocolate, poached cherries, cherry sorbet, vanilla & kirsch espuma“.   She was happy with her choice (I declined to try any as it might have overwhelmed my dessert) and it looked amazing!

chocolate chiboust with Michel Cluizel chocolate, poached cherries, cherry sorbet, vanilla & kirsch espuma

In summary, the food was amazing.  The restaurant was lovely, good service, great wine and good value ($89 for 3 courses!).   In future if I’m ever in the region, I am booking myself in for a meal at Ten Minutes!

For more info and reviews:

Ten Minutes by Tractor on Urbanspoon

Deliciously hot and fiery food at Spice Temple

I love spicy Chinese food and Spice Temple delivers on many different levels of it.  The restaurant decor is very modern has a certain sexiness to it, and the food is wonderfully exciting and made from great fresh ingredients.  Was here as for a reunion dinner with 2 of my favorite ex-workmates and it was a blast – spicy food and lots of wine!

We started with “fried salt and pepper silken tofu with chilli“.  The tofu was delicately fried on the outside and silky on the inside, and served with a fresh chilli sauce.

Fried salt and pepper silken tofu with chilli

The “fish fragrant eggplant” was absolutely delicious.  Eggplant that had been fried so it’s crispy and then coated with a powerful tangy spicy sauce.

Fish fragrant eggplant

The “king prawn wontons with aged black vinegar dressing” had chunks of prawn meat in the wonton and the was swimming in spicy sauce.  Loved it!

King Prawn wontons with aged black vinegar dressing

The “stir fried sea scallops with handmade egg noodles and chilli paste” was a lovely dish that had sweet scallops thrown into wonderfully thick and tasty noodles.  No surprises here – the dish taste exactly as the description.

Stir fried sea scallops with handmade egg noodles and chilli paste

The “steamed snapper with salted chilli and black bean” was the dish that the waitress recommended to us and it was a good choice as the fish was fresh and tasted wonderful with the chilli and black bean.

Steamed Snapper with salted chilli and black bean

Given we were having such a great time and the food was superb, we decided to have dessert!  The “caramel chocolate and peanut parfait” was a rich and delicious.

Caramel chocolate and peanut parfait

And I love a good mango pudding so the “mango pudding with condensed milk chantillyhad to be ordered!  It was creamy and delicious.

Mango pudding with condensed milk chantilly

Upmarket Chinese food that delivers a punch – I think it’s a difficult feat to accomplish and Spice Temple does it wonderfully.  The food does not hold back on flavour and chilli.  Coupled with great atmosphere, location and service, it’s a winner for me.

For more info and reviews:
Spice Temple on Urbanspoon

Homage to Paul Bocuse at l’Auberge du Pont de Collonges

We were in Lyon, and had to pay our respects to the legendary Paul Bocuse by visiting his restaurant Auberge du Pont de Collonges.   I knew what I was in for when I made the booking, which was a restaurant and menu that had not changed since 1975.   And yep, it was exactly what I got.  Rich, luxurious, scrumptious and excessive food!

Since I’d gone all the way there, and the chances of returning are fairly slim, I’d decided to go all out and have the Menu Grande Tradition Classique.  Seven courses, which included a whole Bress chicken and dessert trays that you could select anything from.  Just a small piece of advice if you ever go there: make sure you’re hungry!

Before we started, we had the customary amuse bouche which was a lovely bisque.

Amuse Bouche

First course was “scallop of foie gras, pan-cooked, verjus sauce“.  The foie gras was beautifully seared on the outside and soft inside, and it was served with crispy potato lattice on top and a sweet sticky sauce.

Scallop of foie gras, pan-cooked, verjus sauce

Next up we had the famous “Truffle soup V.G.E.” which was a dish created for the French President in 1975. A dish that has been around for over 35 years must be good to stand the test of time.  I’d expected a thick soup under that puff pastry but it was actually a clear soup with veges and truffle.  Be warned: a bowl of this soup was $82 euros!

Truffle soup V.G.E.

The “filet of sole with noodles, à la Fernand Point” was devine!  Lovely soft and sweet sole with a creamy white sauce (which had been lightly grilled to give it that browned taste) with noodles.

Filet of sole with noodles, à la Fernand Point

We then had a palate cleanser which I thought was worthy of mention: “Beaujolais winemaker’s sherbet“.  It was like icy red wine – really powerful and unexpected.

Beaujolais winemaker’s sherbet

Next we were served a whole “Bresse chicken truffled cooked in a bladder“.  It’s quite scary looking (a chicken in a bladder that’s puffed up from the steam whilst cooking) but really delicious!  The chicken was carved up and served with a creamy sauce filled with morel mushrooms, and a side of rice and spring vegetables.

Bresse chicken truffled cooked in a bladderBresse chicken truffled cooked in a bladder

After that we moved on to a “selection of fresh and matured cheeses from La Mère Richard“.  We were presented with a cart full of cheeses of various varieties and could select any that we wanted!  Divine!

Selection of fresh and matured cheeses from La Mère Richard

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And then came the “delicacies and temptations”, which again involved a cart full of desserts that we could choose from.  I went for the fruit, crepe and cream options whilst my boyfriend went for the sweetest items in the cart.

 Delicacies and temptations

Last item for us was the “fantasies & chocolates” which was a beautiful stand of chocolates and treats.  Note the figurine on top of the stand (it’s a mini Paul Bocuse!).

Fantasies & Chocolates

Overall, it was quite an experience.  Very old school formal, classic dishes, excessive surrounds, immaculate service, luxurious feel throughout the whole experience.   If you have the means and time, definitely do it.  Being a lover of all things French, especially the food, this was a chance to live and breathe French gastronomy.

Moon Under Water

Within the Andrew McConnell’s Builders Arms Hotel, there exists a little dining room called Moon Under Water.   Whilst in the same building, this is distinctly different from the bar and bistro.  For one thing, the menu is a set menu every night at a fixed price.  Another is that it’s blindingly white in the dining room – I felt like if I had worn an all white outfit, I would have disappeared into the room itself.  But we are not here to talk about the color of the room but the food, which was brilliant.  The menu we had that night was perfect for me as jamon, scallops and chicken are some of my favorite things!

We started with deliciously savory cheese biscuits.   I’m a big fan of cheese biscuits, such as Phillipa’s Parmesan Sables so this was a similar treat.

Cheese Biscuit

We were then presented with some grilled peppers, and bread, butter and pickles.  I love surprise peppers, but unfortunately for me, I didn’t get any that were tongue numbing.Grilled peppers, and bread and butter

The Rottness Island scallops, cucumber and fennel was a beautifully light dish with flavors and textures that married very nicely together.

Rottness Island scallops, cucumber and fennel

The shaved jamon, fresh curd, grilled and raw zucchini was a huge surprise to me.  It was light, it was fresh, the texture was amazing and it tasted fantastic.  Who knew you could make the humble zucchini taste so upmarket?

Shaved jamon, fresh curd, grilled and raw zucchini

I love a good roast chook and the roast chicken, celery, leeks and hazelnuts dish was amazing.  The chicken was cooked so perfectly (moist and tender) and the accompaniments matched it beautifully.

Roast chicken, celery, leeks and hazelnutsI like light fruity desserts, so the white peach, lemon cream, blueberries was a great way to end the meal.   The peach was poached, and served along with the cream and fruit were soft fluffy pieces of cake.  Very nice.

White peach, lemon cream, blueberries

Lastly before departing, we were presented with caramel filled chocolate cups.  It was a rich mouthful to end the dinner with.

Chocolates

Don’t expect big pub/bistro type meals here – it’s all light and fine.  Perhaps they change their menu when the weather cools down, but this was what we had in early January.  I think it’s good value for money, and would definitely go again.

For more info:
Moon Under Water (Builders Arms Hotel) on Urbanspoon