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Saturday, March 30, 2013

MUGA Day #5: Sydney: Est

Again, MUGA stands for My Ultimate Global Journey.  The countdown is at #495, Bob Seger's Old Time Rock and Roll, with the video mostly about Tom Cruise in Risky Business.  Est was wonderful.  I had an enjoyable 3-hour meal, which began with Sommelier Chiara and a 2003 Dom Perignon (in a DM champagne glass):

The first course was a chilled soba with assorted vegetables.  

Perhaps the noodles could have been a tad more al dente, and a touch of wasabi might have been perfect, but I'm sure Chef Peter Doyle, a founding father of modern Australian cuisine, knows what he is doing.  Hey, I go to Zippy's and Rainbow Drive Inn.  I had his tasting menu with accompanying wines.

I would say that this is a French fusion restaurant with international flavors and ingredients.  Some of the dishes reminds me of Chef Andre of DOM, particularly the artistry.  A good example was #2, cuttlefish with peas, summer squash and lardo.  Not sure what lardo is, but one definition is Italian cured pork fat.

The wine was a German Mosel Riesling in a Riedel glass, quite sweet, but okay.  Again, I'm being far too suggestive, but in the spirit of being constructive, a junmai daiginjo chilled sake might have provided a better balance, while underscoring the international theme.  The next course was a Moreton bay bug with won bok, coconut, ginger, chili, kaffir lime and coriander, except scallops replaced the bug:

Australians have a way of using insect names for crustaceans.  The bug is smaller than a lobster and is high in omega fatty acids, EPA and DHA.  The wine was an Italian Timorasso.

Next, a steamed Murray cod, shaved abalone, snowpeas, black fungi ginger and shallots, with a Pouilly-Fuisse. 

The main entre was a saddle of venison, black pudding, celeriac (a kind of celery root), apple and semolina gnocchi, with a Shiraz from Barossa Valley:

There were three desserts.  First a rockmelon sorbet with white fig and white cucumbers, then a passion fruit soufflĂ© accompanied by a passion fruit sorbet.  The wine was a Spanish Malaga, which is close to a late harvest German Reisling, but with more character.  This might have been the best wine of the evening.  

The souffle was one of the best I've ever had.  The dinner ended with an expresso and mignardises (tegan blue plum, toasted almond bavarois, coffee biscuit sponge, buttermilk sorbet) and a 2008 Domaine Rotier Gaillac Doux 'Renaissance'.  

After the equivalent of a whole bottle of wine, not sure what was that middle jelly thing, but it was uber tangy and a fine ending to the evening.  I had the opportunity to say thanks to Chef Doyle for a job very well done:

I'm already gaining too much weight.  Tomorrow I will consider going on a fast.

Many times the best restaurants have the most fashionable restroom.  Here is Est's:

The walk back to the Westin was a sure and easy 10 minutes down George Street, which really rocks on Saturday night.

As I close this posting, the countdown on Music Max is at #472, a sensuous Rihanna with Jay Z performing Umbrella.


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