It’s been a while since a made a post. What can I say, I’ve been busy enjoying the European Summer. Anyway I’m back and thought I should get cracking; I actually wanted to get this up before I left but unfortunately ran out of time.
Attica. Australia’s top rated restaurant and the only Melbourne restaurant to crack into S. Pellegrino/Restaurant magazines much coveted “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants”, coming in at No. 32 (No. 21 last year). New Zealand born Ben Shewry is in charge of the pass, and the quality of food and service here is nothing short of exceptional.
Upon entering the restaurant I was greeted by the maitre d’ and shown quickly to my table. The restaurant itself is dimly lit, but not too dark, and is segmented via a number of strategically located walls, which gives the diner a feeling of quite private dining in a small restaurant, when in fact it is realistically quite a bit larger than that. The menu is an 8-course degustation that varies seasonally, priced at $195 it is by no means cheap, but as the saying goes “you get what you pay for”. The menu for us that night read as follows:
We were started off with some fresh-baked house Rye, house-churned butter and almond puree. I love fresh-baked bread, a nice thick crust on the outside and still warm and soft inside. I often judge a restaurant by the quality of their bread, and Attica’s was perfect, as good as some of the top Boulangeries in Paris. Following the bread was an assortment of amuse-bouches; ricotta and honey, mushroom greens, wallaby sausage, and tempura mussels.
I loved each of these little bite sized appetisers, just enough to wet the palate and have me craving for more.
The first proper courses were served, and along with them the expected explanation from our waiters of where the food was sourced, how it’s cooked and what it all is. Sometimes I feel that this is a little unnecessary, that being said I always listen and always enjoy it… makes me feel fancy.
There are far too many dishes to go through, but I will say everything was delicious, and the plating was really beautiful (my photos often do not do the chefs justice). Highlights for me were the Ten flavours of St Joseph’s wort (Basil) and King George Whiting in Paperbark.
Between mains and desserts we were also invited out to have a walk in their garden, seeing some of the fresh produce that we had eaten and also treated to a home made raspberry ice-cream dipped in melted chocolate. It was a wonderful little surprise and gave our stomachs the break needed before we tucked into dessert.
The night finished with another surprise, little chocolate eggs filled with gooey salted caramel. I must admit I thought they were real eggs and was a little confused when they first showed up at the table.
I had a fantastic experience at Attica. For the price you pay to dine here, it is not just about the food, but also the wonderfully efficient and non-intrusive service, the ambiance and the pleasant little surprises along the way that make this a truly memorable experience.