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Who knew self-service hot stone cooking would rock? Stone-grill dining is at the heart of Ishiya Stone Grill in Melbourne’s Little Bourke Street. It brings together the simplicity of refined ingredients in an also surprisingly refined dining experience (considering you’re waving tongs and meat over […]
The speciality dish of long-standing Elizabeth Street Sarawak Kitchen is the kampua. It’s a Sarawak (Malaysia) noodle dish which translates to dry noodles on a plate. And according to the first Googled search result, it’s an authentic one here in the busy streets of Melbourne.
My partner Jamie (@JamieMagikalEatz) was invited to come try out Shompen. It’s a new Indian Fusion restaurant situated in one of the backstreets of the ever popular Carlton. I (Matt!) was of course lucky enough to accompany him.
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There’s a scene in Series 2 of Australian Princess where contestant Kylie surmises that High Tea involves getting high and having tea. I wasn’t quite that bad, but was welcomed to my very first one at a launch event for the InterContinental Melbourne’s new offering at Alluvial. Joined by other food bloggers, industry, press and other important looking people, we were treated to bubbles, amazing teas, service with character and visual spectacle on every corner. And the food.
Each bite is an indulgence and the cake tiers included beef Wellington pies, sandwiches, scones (an especially amazing family recipe of the chef), bagels and croquettes. If that wasn’t enough, there were tables of unlimited donuts, macarons, cakes, brownies, mousses, cheesecake, fruit and fondue. And a candy bar. We left wholly impressed, completely stuffed and we would recommend going based on our experience. I now have an appreciation for this intriguing society course and will be sure to check it out a few more times!
Upon entering the Alluvial space, a vacancy between two seperate buildings, there’s an immediate sense of wonder and my dinner date Jenny and I were reeling with anticipation. We weren’t starved by any means, having recently just finished up a work lunch at Bistro Guillaume earlier but were able to access our additional stomachs to ensure we could make the most of the event. This location is new for the High Tea, allowing the addition of the dessert buffet, chocolate fountain and lolly bar. These are three very good reasons indeed.
We first dug into the items on our tier stand, with the kitchen also being compatible with the table’s allergies. Buttermilk scones sat at the top of the tower, and they were also top in taste. We both enjoyed the crispy crunch of the scone, encasing a fluffy and buttery interior. The Darbon jam and cream were ideal accompainments. Cream first, then jam of course. Lemon curd option too. Our neighbouring diners also remarked on the quality of these humble scones.
The other two plates were savoury, and these included an asparagus and ricotta quiche tartlet, beef wellington and a smoked cod croquette with red pepper coulis. Downstairs you can find the ham and cheese sandwich, cucumber sandwich and the salmon and cream cheese mini-bagel. My favourite item here was the beef wellington, it was a such a treat to get it in a mini form. Sandwiches and tart were a bit more on the standard side of things, plus there’s plenty to get your fill from.
Then there’s the dessert buffet. Or should that be dessert buffets? Options here were the massive chocolate fountain, mixed lolly bar, fruit salad and donuts that came in three different colours. The donuts were solid game, with the dough being light and puffy, ready for your eating. Good frosting and cute sprinkles. It’s a sophisticated experience at Alluvial, with unabashed enjoyment from perfectly executed food items. Tea also comes around frequently to keep the liquids topped up too.
Then we arrived at the massive centre display of desserts, all presented immaculately and in copious amounts. Items were: veneered buttercream carrot cake, chocolate brownie with peanut butter and walnut, chocolate mousse and crushed hazelnut pots. Then: velvet peach and mango cheesecake, chia seed and strawberry pots, macarons in five exciting colours. Whew! It was a mission to get a bite of everything and it was all universally good. Jenny was particularly into the brownie but it was too heavy for some of the others. Carrot cake and cheesecake were my faves from this lot, but it was all good.
The final part of the high tea, is of course the tea. And such good tea did we have. My choice was the Silver Moon which came recommended, it’s a green tea blend with grand berry and a vanilla bouquet and this was darling. A slight fruitiness elevated this brew to a most excellent one.
The high tea experience comes with a price tag of $75 per person , with a choice between the tea option with a glass of champagne, or a coffee option with an espresso martini. Both sounds like winners, and for a good few hours of catch up with friends with catered conspicuous eating that’s decent value. Check out Alluvial Saturdays and Sundays for your own afternoon indulgence.
For more information on the launch of the High Tea visit here
Note: author dined at invitation of the restaurant
Along with a group of food people I experienced an authentic and unique Danish steakhouse dining experience in A Hereford Beefstouw. With top notch food across every course, plenty of charm and a history that you can taste in every bite.
Things are a bit expensy dining at Sakura Kaiten II, but the restaurant is a bit of a novelty so it’s worth checking out at least the one time. From the front there’s walls lined with Dragonball Z and anime merchandise and the playfulness continues […]
The sourdough really lives up its expectation as the star of the show at Rustica Canteen. Service on this busy Saturday morning was a little hectic but the food was worth coming in for, and made for a great start for our day. In sharing our meal we made sure to get one of the signature sandwiches and went with a salad for a bit of balance.
The sandwich ($14.50) came first and that was the slow roasted lamb shoulder with rosemary, garlic, mint yoghurt, pomegranate, lettuce and lemon sumac salt. I must say, all the menu options were on point and absolutely fantastic. I would have been happy with anything from here. The roll also came with a surprise pickle mash, which was quite a moreish side, that we both enjoyed. I’m not sure I fully understood the inclusion of the pomegranate, but the yoghurt and lamb mix made for an amazing roll filling, being tender, tasty and fragrant. The lamb and the bread both were served super warm, as if it simply arrived out of the oven/ cooker and into our happy stomachs. Very good.
The second part of the lunch was the salad, and was decently good. Walnuts and goats’ cheese is a great and classic mix. In this dish was also a mix of honey roasted Brussel sprouts, candied beetroot, broccolini, basil, greens and the walnuts and goats’ cheese. Slightly too heavy on the greens part of that description but a most competent salad. Rustica Canteen has a serious morning crowd and the sandwiches will no doubt keep the masses coming back in for more. Bonus: cabinet baking all looked great.