I am very fortunate to have made some really great friends from Mini Me's kinder group, and even though it's been a few years since kinder, we still try to get out to dinner at least once a school term. For our recent gathering we dined at Albert St Food and Wine, as suggested by my friend Tepid Duck. (That's right, no kids and no Hubby!) This gem of a restaurant, overseen by executive chef Philipa Sibley, boasts a great menu utilising excellent quality local produce, a wide ranging wine list, and a store which sells some of their favourite products as well as their own creations.
The Smoked salmon rillettes, avocado & cucumber salad, rye toast ($19) was an interesting contrast of cruchy bread with the delicate shredded fish.
From the grill we tried the Smoked sardines on grilled bread, capers, currants, pinenuts ($15). The lovely bitey sardines on crunchy bread was a great combination. A squirt of lemon juice brought extra freshness.
The Pizza Bianca – garlic, rosemary, parmesan, ($14) was beautiful in its simplicity.
My favourite savoury dish of the night however, was the Spanner Crab Risotto, with pine mushrooms and chestnuts. ($26) Risottos can often taste very similar even with different ingredients but this one was flavoursome and distinct. I think I could've eaten the whole plate! (I probably had more than my fair share, sorry girls!)
We were surprisingly full by this time but could not go past the wonderful desserts. Originally we were going to order 2 to share, but ended up with 3 as they all sounded so tempting! First up a slice of Meyer Lemon Tart ($14). An excellent lemon tart, with thin crust (just the way I like) and a smooth lemon curd filling.
The Poire Belle Hélène is traditionally a dessert made from a poached pear, served with chocolate syrup and vanilla ice-cream. Albert St's version ($17) delivered a twist in the form of a chocolate fondant with a flowing center. Oh the indulgence! It was gorgeous.
My favourite dessert of the night was the Quince, ginger breadcrumbs, and preserved lemon ice cream ($16). Oh I loved everything about this! Having never tried preserved lemon in ice-cream before, this was a refreshing experience. The crunchy bits of gingerbread left me wanting more!
I had a fab dinner at Albert St Food and Wine. Lovely company, great staff, fabulous food and atmosphere. A wonderful place for a catch up and I'm envious of the locals! I wouldn't take young children here, but I think older children would quite enjoy the experience, and I saw a family with a couple of children aged about 10 who looked to have had a lovely dinner. We ended the meal with a browse of the goodies in the store. I will definitely have to bring Hubby back since he missed out!
Eat.Play.Shop. says - Simple, lovely, fresh dishes using local produce in a trendy restaurant, with goodies to shop for afterwards. What's not to like?