Thursday, March 3, 2011

Attica - Ripponlea

There were only 4 Australian restaurants that made it onto San Pellogrino World's Best Restaurants list last year and having had the honour of dining at Quay (ranked #27 in the world and the highest ranked restaurant amongst the 4 Australian restaurants) last year, the boy was keen to visit Attica (ranked #73). Me, however, not so keen. The idea of another degustation menu, long waits in between....just threw me off.

But am I glad I went!
On weekends they only offer the 8-course degustation so that's what we had.
Butter and smoked olive oil with black rock salt.
He was delegated the *cough* tough *cough* choice of choosing the wine
Meanwhile I was delegated the even tougher task of having to eat the bread. O woe is me.
Sashimi of prawns (complimentary appetiser). Yum. So fresh and refreshing. It truly whet my appetite for the next few courses. 
The science lab for molecular gastronomists!
Molecular magic!
Tada! Snowcrab with horseradish powder, roe, puffed rice, pomelo (I think!) and many other ingredients I'm sure. This dish set the bar very high- this was such a textural tease! Every spoonful tasted different because of the different flavours and textures embedded in the clever play of ingredients. 
Marron tail with leek, egg yolk, garlic. The freshest seafood I've tasted in a while. I didn't think it'd work with the egg yolk, but the pairing was beautiful.
' a simple dish of potato cooked in the earth it was grown' I was very keen to try this dish, but unfortunately it just reminded me of a very well cooked potato. It probably didn't help that when I was younger and still in primary school my mom would always pack boiled potatoes for my lunches haha. I didn't exactly like the goats cheese cream it was sitting on either.
Bass grouper, shitake, quinoa and raw brocollini flowers in dashi broth with slivers of radish. I enjoyed everything but the fish (but that's because I don't like cooked fish that much....I reckon it's boring :x .. unless it's salmon or cod- then we're talking! )
Pork tail, black pudding, pickled onion sauce, beetroot watermelon, dune spinach and flowers! Delicious- the pork tail was made to resemble something like deep-fried taro (always seen at yum cha) but still kept it's lovely, flavoursome taste. And beetroot infused watermelon? Who would've thought! I ate all the flowers on my plate too haha
I think somewhere in between this and the previous dish I was starting to feel stuffed to the brim with food. This was beef cooked 3 ways- Wagyu beef (very good), smoked ox tongue (so tender, and literally melts in your mouth), cured beef with tomatoes
I needed a hot glass of water with lemon to digest all that goodness I had just consumed. What's quirky about this glass is that it's tempered so even though the water was BOILING, we couldn't feel it on the outside. Kinda tricky, if you ask me....imagine if I'd been impatient and gulped everything down yikes. But that's ok, it came with a warning from the waitress to be careful so I was saved that night haha
honeydew, peach sorbet and blackberries. A great way to finish the meal- this felt like a palatte cleanser.
Strawberries, brown sugar, cream. Imagine this dish without the cream. Now imagine one of the chefs coming over to your table to introduce this dish, and to also pour the sour cream over the strawberries. Cos that's what happened! How often do you get chefs coming out of the kitchen during meal prep time? If I wasn't full to the point of bursting I would've eaten everything...but sadly I could only manage 3 or 4 so the rest went onto the boy's plate :D
We thought the strawberries were the end of the meal, but we were presented with two salted caramel filled white chocolate eggs with brown chocolate speckles. How pretty!

I was very impressed with Attica- almost all the dishes were amazing. Would I go again? Definitely...but I'd opt for the 5-course menu instead of the 8 so that I can enjoy the food better :) Oh, and I have to tell myself not to wear such a tight dress the next time so all the food can go down!