Sunday, 4 March 2012

Etch Restaurant @ Sydney (CLOSED)


Etch is the brain child of award winning Chef and Owner Justin North so therefore is also sided with the restaurant called Becasse, and the Charlie and Co. Burger Bar. 
Etch provides a casual European dining experience, with the joy of food that isn't to harsh on the wallet. With a French inspired decor such as long lounges in the foyer, and in the dining area there are paintings along the wall with gold trimmed frames. Lucky for me, a friend showed me a voucher to enjoy an 8 course degustation (including amuse bouche and pre dessert). Let the feast begin!

This was strange. I asked the waiter what it was, and she stated it was 'a cold creamed corn soup'. I can't compare it to anything that I have tasted before, so to me it tasted like a chive and chicken salt sauce. It may have not been pleasant to the tongue, but was definitely interesting...

Local figs, woodside goats curd with a sesame twirl
This set the degustation flowing. This was my first time trying figs, and what an amazing fruit. The combination of the figs with the curd had an explosion of flavour, mixed with the balsamic vinegar based sauce caused all the taste buds to dance. The crunch of the sesame twirl just added that extra oomph to the dish.

Crispy prawn salad with mango and wasabi dressing
One of my favourite dishes of the lunch. My friend doesn't like prawns, and she even enjoyed the dish. The dressing is what made the dish, with the sweetness of mango and kick of the wasabi. All together, I just wanted to lick the plate clean. Words can't describe the delight of this dish.

Risotto Milanese with baby vegetables
The risotto had a similar taste to the amuse bouche, difference being that the rice made it a lot nicer. The taste wasn't as strong, and the subtleness of the baby vegetables gave the dish a nice balance of flavours. The coriander added a freshness to the dish.

Caramelised pork belly, kohlrabi puree, pickled peach and crispy pig ears
Do not be turned off by the idea of crispy big ears, it was delightful. You wouldn't even think it was pig ears unless someone actually told you, they tasted like calamari. Now, Kholrabi (a German turnip, which in Vietnamese is called Su hau) had a nice subtle taste which added a lightness to the caramelised pork belly and the strong taste of the pickled peaches. The dish contained 2 sauces, peach gel sauce, and balsamic sauce. Both working very well with the meats on the dish.

Aromatic slow braised lamb shoulder, cauliflower puree, garlic spinach, mint, balsamic
The lamb was a dish that just melted in your mouth.  Beautifully cooked, with a rich brown balsamic based sauce. To me, the garlic spinach made this dish extra delicious by adding a crunch and a new level of flavour. The sauce made all the components work well together, to the point where I wanted to have my own tub of it.

Pre dessert - Honey marshmallow with sliced poached pear& nashi pear and a pear sauce  
The purpose of a pre dessert is to cleanse the palette for the real dessert. This was a light pre dessert. The marshmallow wasn't too sweet, and the slices of pear added a freshness which took away all the tastes of the previous dishes to prepare us for the dessert to come.

Dessert - Lemon parfait with pineapple, coriander and young coconut salad
The dessert, is the make or break of any meal, and this was a make. I was mesmerised by the the perfectly presented dessert, and couldn't wait to devour it. A parfait, is a reference to a frozen dessert made of sugar syrup, egg and cream. At the base of the parfait there was toasted coconut which added a crunch to the silky smooth lemon dessert.  On the top of the parfait there a crispy meringue and some passion fruit pulp. The young coconut was soft and delicate, with the perfect amount of sweetness, which worked well with the pineapple. The coriander added a little punch of freshness to the dessert. When all those components were combined, I was in a whole new world. Every spoonful just got better and better.

The overall experience at Etch Restaurant was superb. The staff provided a great service, and the ambiance of the restaurant was a casual yet classy dining experience. I hope to go to Etch again to try other foods on there standard menu.

Good food, good times!


MissPiggy 4 March 2012 at 09:47

I think I've bought a voucher to Etch so will be giving it a whirl in the next few looks so lovely.

Michelle 4 March 2012 at 12:36

A lovely insightful review Thanh! I will be visiting Etch again, I must say that servings for this course were small but rightfully so, to not overwhelm the consumer considering it was a 8 course menu. I do wonder if their servings are larger or not on a regular menu. The fig and prawn/mango dishes would be my favorites of the day

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