There has recently been a lot of Groupon vouchers on offer for set menus or degustations at fine dining establishments. Naturally I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try out Waterfront at Circular Quay. For $45 each, a friend and I had bread, salad and a bottle of wine to share, as well as an entree and a main each. When I booked the table I let them know that I had dietary requirements and I was surprised that on arrival the waiter was already briefed on what I could and couldn’t have. Our waiter, Alfredo, was charismatic and delivered excellent service all night. Unfortunately they could not substitute the bread out for another salad, but he told us that we can have GF garlic pizza instead for an extra $4. The pizza was very garlic-y (just the way my friend and I like it) with a delicious dollop of olive tapanade. The crust was thin and a little hard to cut with a knife but probably would have been a lot easier to eat with our hands (we weren’t sure if it was polite to do so though!). We also tried the Italian salad with a sweet honey dressing. It was super fresh with large chunks of cucumber and tomatoes tossed with onions and salad leaves.
Next came the entrees. We took AGES to decide but I ended up getting the French onion soup (minus the bread with melted gruyere). I didn’t expect that the portion would be HUGE (almost the size of a main)! The mellowed and caramalised onion was a delight to devour but I have to say I miss eating it with crusty bread. The flavours were dense and intense and saturated all my tastebuds. I feel like I should have asked them to add the cheese as it needed something to break up that block of flavour from the stock and onions. I could only eat half of it as I still needed space for the main course!
And now the main course! Chicken “coq au vin” style! It was absolutely delicious! The first thing I noticed was the mashed potato was so smooth, so creamy and slightly sticky on the palette, not like other mashed potatoes where it is a little dryer and powdery. It really was the best mash I had ever EVER had. The chicken was also delicious, moist (actually a small part was overcooked and dry) with bits of crispy bacon and an amazingly smooth, full bodied sauce.
Even though we were absolutely stuffed we wanted to finish off the meal with some dessert so we shared the creme brulee. It was a great end to the meal! Tapping the crunchy top gave way to an amazingly smooth vanilla flavoured custard below. It was accompanied by some biscotti (not GF so my friend ate it) and a tremendously good berry compote. The compote was smooth, sweet and very well balanced with a tiny bit of tartness to cut through it all.
After all that food and probably a bit too much wine for two small Asian women we left very very satisfied. So satisfied in fact, that we both almost fell asleep on the train ride home! All in all, great food, great atmosphere in a great location!
***Originally published Sep 2013 on my previous blog***