The (East) Village Hotel
234 Palmer Street
Tel: 9331 5457
Don't you love it when you have no plans for the evening & you spontaneously decide to go out & try a restaurant you've been meaning to visit for ages? I'm not normally a 'spur of the moment' type of gal, but I enjoy these random restaurant adventures.
Tonight we decide to head to The Village Restaurant, East Sydney after hearing some great things about Adam Spencer's food.
The restaurant on the top floor of the Village Hotel, is relatively small, but has a lovely, relaxed, comfy feel to it. The tables are quite large & well spaced.
We kick things off with a glass each of a NZ Sauvignon Blanc, followed by the complimentary bread/brioche with capsicum...tasty!
The arrival of the Amuse Bouche of Roasted Kingfish, eggplant puree & coriander, does indeed have our mouths watering (strange, when you consider I don't really like fish, coriander or eggplant!). The kingfish's subtle flavour is enhanced by the addition of the eggplant & coriander. It is a very successful melding of the three flavours.
Buggles' Scallops with crispy chicken wing, candied fennel & pollen caramel is divine. The scallops ever so slightly underdone are wonderfully buttery with great caramelisation...the crispy chicken & candied fennel take the dish to a whole other level adding salt, sweet & crunch. Very good.
My Peas & Ham which consists of raviolo, slow cooked ham, peas, consomme & hens' egg, is truly remarkable. The egg is encased within the raviolo & the yolk inside is still beautifully lush & runny. The ham is full of flavour & incredibly tender, the peas really help to cut through the richness of the dish as does the light, clean consomme . Truly delicious.
Switching to a Swan Bay Pinot Noir to accompany our mains, we are suitably impressed when they arrive.
The Lamb: rump, sweetbreads, lamb 'croutons', peas and baby cos, is a winner with Buggles. The rump is perfectly pink, juicy & tender; the sweetbreads for the most part are soft & delicious....the lamb crouton however, is a revelation; consisiting of slow cooked shredded lamb, topped with a puree of sorts (potato?).
A wonderfully conceived & executed dish.
My Wagyu Sirloin 9+ is served on a wooden board along with: chunky chips, a fresh dressed salad of leaves, three mustards & jus....and just because 9+ marbling isn't indulgent enough, I order the optional roasted bone marrow!
The sirloin is sublime, so unbelievably tender, juicy and incredibly flavoured. The silky marrow just melts over the meat & in the mouth, I am in heaven. The chips could be a little crisper on the outside, but are still very good & lovely & fluffy inside.
After finishing this dish, Buggles does suggest that she thinks I enjoyed it more than my last steak at Rockpool Bar & Grill...and you know what, she is right, this is the best steak I have eaten in a very long time.
What a spectacular dish.
At this point we are feeling unusually full (9+ marbling & bone marrow perhaps?), however once we read the dessert menu we know we have to muster up all our strength & plough forward.
Toffee Pear is poached pear, pear cider mousse, pear puree & praline. A very interesting dish, the cider mousse does capture the cider flavour well & is almost a little 'savoury' which is great with the sweet pears.....the praline is much needed as it adds texture & balance to the dish.
Peanut Butter is made up of a peanut butter parfait, pureed banana & salted caramel popcorn. This is pretty special, the parfait is rich and full of peanut buttery deliciousness and the banana puree meshes wonderfully with it....the salted caramel popcorn is the icing on the cake. Love it, Love it, Love it!
The Botrytis Semillon goes down a treat as well.
I really cannot express how truly wonderful this meal was, we thoroughly enjoyed it, Adam Sencer is doing great things in the kitchen....add to this the genuinely warm & friendly service and the exceptional value (entrees $14-$16; Mains $24-$32; Desserts $12) and The Village Restaurant is a must (regular) visit.