Monday, 7 December 2009
Australia’s best restaurant 2009 and 2010 hmmmm? Better than Vue De Monde and Tetsuyas eeeeyyyyy? More regarded than a Grand Angus?!!?!? Is that right!??!?! Preposterous!!!
It’s hard not to be immediately impressed by this gastronomic goliath. Quay has arguably the best room in Oz, perched at end of the Overseas Passenger Terminal with views of both the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. There’s also the wait staff that surely possess an ESP John Edwards would be jealous of, a freaky service that knows your needs and make you feel special without the puppy dog gush.
What’s that you say?! You want more?!!? If you’re not wowed already, then the food will get you excited. Peter Gilmore’s dishes are NSW Gallery contemporary classic to Shannon Bennett’s MCA cutting edge funk. Let’s go through the lineup one by one.
Amuse bouche of Ocean Trout, crème fraiche, sago
I’m not one for congee unless I’m sick or during winter, but it’s hard refrain from the sweetness of the mud crab in the stewed down rice.
Pearls of the Sea (tuna, octopus and smoked eel, mud crab, dashi jelly and abalone, scallops and lime) aren’t going to eat themselves.
Cubed pieces of pork belly with its thin, crisp skin, braise of abalone and ribbons of cuttlefish, silken tofu. My heart skipped a beat when I saw this dish that played to my Asian heart.
Quail breast, black pudding crumbed with hints of chocolate and walnut, truffle custard, contrasting firm palm heart. The earthy flavours are perfectly balanced that should sway even those who avoid game and animal red stuff.
Berkshire pork jowl (cheek), blistered, crisp skin, the mild prune’s fruity sweetness and cauliflower puree accentuate the luxuriously fatty meat.
A brick of crisp pressed duck confit on a bed of winter veggies and scallops is surf ‘n’ turf on a magic carpet.
A Masterchef analogy for the best desserts I’ve had anywhere to date.
The 8 textures of chocolate is Chris: brash, bold, rich, indulgent and pure ego. That pothole in the middle is theatrically created in the middle by a dollop of molten chocolate at the table. And presumably doubling as a drool pan.
Snow Egg is Poh: inventive, quirky, and pleasant to look at. What is essentially a reconstructed egg, white peach ice-cream is surrounded by pillowy meringue, covered by crystallised maltose, and sits on a bed of peach granita and caramelise and vanilla ice-cream. An elegant vase of textures and temperatures.
Like the first time I bit into that gourmet Maccas burger, an unforgettable experience.
So Quay… Better than Momo or Cutler & Co!? Melbourne snobbery and foodie parochialism aside… okay Sydney, you’ve got a pretty damn good restaurant.
5 / 5 yums!
Where? Overseas Passenger Terminal, The Rocks, Sydney, NSW
What? 4 courses $155, Signature menu $210