26 Cotham Rd, Kew ph (03) 9207 7477
The room was packed to the rafters with guests. After everyone was seated, a curtain pulled back to reveal an open kitchen, where George Calombaris, David Tsirekas, Travis McAuley (executive chef, Hellenic Republic), Arron Lynch (head chef Hellenic Republic) and Alex Xinis (head chef, Hellenic Kew) worked their magic preparing dishes under the fascinated eyes of their captive dinning audience.
We started with David's Tarama churros, latholemono, a savoury churro, a fabulous Greek take on the Spanish "donut".
The kefalograviera saganaki by Alex Xinis was a wonderful version of the traditional dish. I love, love, love those caramelised grapes!
We watched the chefs dish up the Seafood kokoretsi, skordalia by David Tsirekas with fascination. In essence a seafood filled roll with a crispy pastry, the crunchy outer shell contrasted wonderfully with the delicious and luscious seafood it encapsulated.
I loved Alex Xinis' Melitzanosalata - I love eggplant in general, and the dish really showcased the fabulous versatility in texture and tastes you get get with the humble eggplant.
Each of the dishes were shared by 4 of us at the table, but by this stage I was honestly wondering how I would be able to finish all the food that were to come. The duck and quince by David Tsirekas made it easy for me to "exercise"..... my ability to stretch my stomach to accommodate more food! The sweet and tangy sauce perfectly balanced the duck meat that had been cooked to perfection.
No meal is complete without sweets for me! David's Touloumba, warm rosewater custard, honeyed walnuts was a traditional and comforting dessert with a lovely custard....
....whilst the "Magnamopolous" - Greek yoghurt ice cream, caramelia, mastic, fruit was another one of George's marvellously fun creations, a tilt of the hat to Australia's favourite Magnum, with a slap of Greek pride and a wonderful tangy twist with the use of frozen yoghurt and fruit.