Saturday, 24 September 2016

Quay, Circular Quay

Quay has claimed three hats from the SMH Good Food Guide Awards for 2017.  I've never had the pleasure of dining at Quay however when MW's birthday recently came up, he suggested we go to Quay. MW really wanted to taste the snow egg (which was show cased on Masterchef).

I had booked months in advanced for a Saturday lunch at Quay so when I also found out they had 3 hats from the Food Good Guide, I was very excited. 

When I booked, Quay gave email notice that there would be blocked view of the Opera House by a big cruise ship however there would still be views of the Harbour Bridge. I was seated at a table that was two tables behind this one (above) so it was a gorgeous view.

To start the lunch, I ordered a cocktail called Wonderland ($20, above) which is described as "A fresh kick of citrus with soho lychee liquor, apple eau de vie and st germain elderflower". It's a freshing and fruity cocktail.

MW ordered a fancy beer of "La Sirene, Fleur Folie, Honey Saison (Melbourne, Australia), 375mls" for $15. I quite liked this beer, lighter and mildly hoppy.

After looking at the Quay menu, we settle on the 4 courses for lunch for $175. The complimentary sourdough bread with house churned butter with herb salt was a nice start along with the puffed rice with goat's cheese and cucumber (above photo).

For the first course, I choose the Aged Black pig pancetta, walnuts, grains, pickled mushrooms, pepitas, black vinegar laver.  This is an absolutely beautiful dish by Quay. When I first bite into my spoon, my mouth feels a number of textures - predominantly the grains but then you also taste the pancetta, sauce and flowers in one as well. I love the beauty and creativity of this dish.

MW's first dish was the Raw smoked Blackmore wagyu, horseradish soured cream, fermented rye crisps and raw funghi. I'm not really used to eating raw meat but MW really enjoys this first course. This dish is also full of textures and flavours. There's a nice crunch to the rye crisps. 

For the second course, MW orders the Comte Custard, Spring Vegetables in a wakame broth. This dish is served in a very light broth and is full of greens. The custard is a very small teaspoon sized in the middle. I can tell MW is mildly disappointed in this dish as he was expecting the comte custard to be more prominent. I agree that this dish is not as nice as my second course.

I order the Roasted local octopus, slipper lobster with pickled endives in an XO sauce. MW is allergic to shell fish so he can't have any of my dish. As a seafood lover, I absolutely fall in love with this dish. The octopus is perfectly cooked and is soft in texture. The XO sauce is light so you can taste the natural flavours of the octopus and lobster. I also think there is a nice portion of the lobster to enjoy.

For the next course, MW orders the Oxtail, Black Angus Beef, castelfranco radicchio and black garlic. The Angus Beef was so tender and juicy. MW has a massive smile on his face. 

I ordered the Sommerlad bred chicken, brioche, grains, morel, coco button mushrooms.  This dish continues the theme of crunchy textures which compliments the sauce and moist chicken.  This dish is very homely.

A side salad is also served to share with the chicken and black angus mains.

Now to the highlight of the meal which is dessert. This signature dessert has always been popular however it got even more exposure on Masterchef in 2010 however it's legendary experience lives on.

MW has been looking forward to the snow egg. As it arrives, I notice how delicate it looks. MW disagrees and gets straight into smashing it. 

The Snow egg has a centre of ice cream which is encased in a poached meringue (which has a marshmellow like texture). There is an additional crack to the snow egg which is malt biscuit that is blow torched to encase the egg. 

The video below which Peter Gilmore talks about the snow egg is addictive and I keep watching it over and over.

Matt absolutely loves the snow egg. I love the snow egg. It's a winner all round. I think this dish encapsulates the ideal experience because it has multiple textures and flavours. It adds a bit of interaction as you crack into the egg and it captures your inner child. 

I also order another Quay signature which is their famous eight layered chocolate cake. Eight is my lucky number so I've got full confidence that this dessert is amazing. When the eight layered chocolate cake is served, the Quay staff add the final layer by pouring the chocolate into the centre of the cake. I love a bit of food theatre.

Again, Peter Gilmore explains the famous eight layered chocolate cake in a video which is very easy to watch. 

The Eight layered textured chocolate cake also requires a bit of a crack as the top layer is hard. The centre layers are soft with mousse, ganache and with a thin biscuit base.

It's a mouthful of chocolate bliss. It's quite a rich dessert and MW thinks there is a slight bitterness to the chocolate cake. I quite like the cake. It's not something you can eat regularly as it's very decadent but I like it.

As it's MW's birthday, Quay also surprises us with a final cupcake. MW makes a wish and devours this cupcake. Make a wish!!

Overall, I had a really nice experience at Quay. It's always nice to celebrate a birthday with a lovely meal. 

Some of my other favourite fine dining experiences in Sydney are from

Quay Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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