I finally had the opportunity to dine at Cutler & Co, having been wanting to go for couple of months after hearing rave reviews from friends. It's a 2-hat restaurant that has been bestowed the title of Gourmet Traveller Restaurant of the Year 2011- so obviously I had high expectations. Apologies for the pictures as I only took my digicam with me, so on its highest ISO setting (400) the pictures turned out a little grainy and blur.
It's very nicely decorated inside- in fact, I think it has one of the most beautiful decor of all the restaurants I've ever been to, from the exposed brick walls to the jellyfish and glass lighting hanging from the ceiling.
I chose to start with the Spanner crab, abalone and sweet corn soup. I really liked the abalone pieces and random ginger bits in the soup, but overall this was a let down. I would have much preferred a seafood clam chowder over this anyday.
The boy ordered the Mandarin duck- crisp leg, smoked fillet, boudin noir and lentils as his entree- this was absolutely delicious. The duck was tender, juicy and flavoursome. This dish came with boudin noir which is blood sausage and I tend not to eat that so much, but he said it went very well with the duck.
He followed his entree with the Roast Suckling pig, XO spring onion, garlic and parsley root. We both really didn't like this. It was very Asian inspired but it would have been done ten times better at a Chinese restaurant.
I had the Potato Gnocchi roasted with Tallegio (above), cauliflower and fennel salad (both pictured below). The potato gnocchi was out of this world. It was coated with what I suspect is crispy breadcrumbs (?) and there was literally a party in my mouth when I took bites of the gnocchi with tallegio cheese. Mmmm. The cauliflower with shallots (below, on the left) was quite ordinary and tasted like something you could takeaway from an Indian restaurant with curry and the works. The fennel salad (below, on the right) with peas and mint was so refreshing and tasted unbelievable when eaten together with the gnocchi.
And then time came for dessert...!
We both shared the Violet ice-cream, chocolate ganache and sour cherry. The violet ice-cream provided a great hit of floral flavour and almost felt like a palette cleanser...it was really nice. Everything else on the plate was a miss. It was nicely plated on 2 separate plates when we told them we would be sharing dessert, so that was really nice of them.
Overall, I didn't quite enjoy the food as much as I thought I would as it was a bit hit and miss. Would I go back again? Maybe, to try the Cured Kingfish one day...