Friday, August 07, 2015

Minamashima (Richmond) 08/2015

This is the photograph of a wanted man. Don't let him leave the city, we need him here!

It took quite a while for us to get here after it was recommended to us by Brian Lloyd, MD at Brooks. As often happens suggestions by people in the industry turn out to be worth following and this one certainly was. The buzz about Minamashima is extremely positive.
Entry is via an unobtrusive glass door.

The restaurant is simply set out with an understated sophisticated decor. Tables along one side of the room are separated  from a long bar behind which chef Minimashima, pictured above, displays his skills. They have an attractive and informative web site.
We had the degustation menu with matched Sake. You could have it with traditional wines if you wished.
Many dishes were served on black plates/platters and were hard to photograph at the table.
This was the menu.
Grilled Otway shiitake mushroom,  Kombu butter, dried fish and nori seasoning 
Served with a cloudy sparkling sake - Dassai sparkling nigori
Chawanmushi  spanner crab kombu flake
A delicate combination of flavours and textures. Truly fine food.
Kaishun junmai iwami karakuchi I couldn't believe the alcohol content, over 16%
NZ storm clam sake steamed
Another masterpiece.
Tamazakura Junmai Ginjo
Charcoal grilled wagyu rib umeshu soy.
I was so wrapped in the food that I overlooked a pic. here. It was a small very tasty dish served in a sort of urn so there was little to see
Chiyo Moromi Nigori
Strawberry shiso sorbet
Gunard kombu cured
Sea perch Ponzu dressing
Hokkiado Hotate/ Scallop
Engawa/flounder fin
Otoro/tuna belly
Otoro aburi
Uni Murasaki
Anago box sushi
These were as a good an example of sushi I have ever experienced. Of course everything was light and fresh, the proportions of fish to rice were just right, the variety great. Each came with a lightly pickled pile of ginger and instructions as to the need for added seasoning to taste.
Asahi Wakamatsu Junmai Muroka Nama Genshu
This was one of the low alcohol offerings!
Hokkiado snow crab broth, Yuba, winter melon 
Taketsuru Ozasaya Junmai Kimoto Genshu
Warabi mocha, Okinawa black sugar syrup, calamarised walnut
And dessert
With a great dessert wine 
Umetsu Junmai Umeshu Nokyo This is the sort of meal we might have expected at a high end Tokyo restaurant. It compares to Tempura Hajime, which is still surviving with room for only 12 diners, but we thought it considerably better. The major downside is that it was expensive, about $250 per person with one matched wine and they were generous with the wines which were dangerously intoxicating. 
Score 17/20

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

ribs and rumps (Townsville) 07/2015

This basic  specialty restaurant is simply and pleasantly decorated. Bare tables, central cutlery and serviette containers, practical glassware no frills except perhaps the light shades.

Well situated at one end of a strip of restaurants and hotels it offers both indoor and out door dining
Their specialty is, of course, ribs. Short ribs, a half rack pictured, or a full rack, beef ribs, lamb ribs, pork ribs whatever.
They come with chips and a short plastic apron
Of course they also have a variety of steaks including waghu rump ($30 to 
$47) Chicken, calamari and so on BUT it's ribs they are famous for. Grilled and marinated they're delicious. 
Score:Almost 14 /20

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Vue again! (Melbourne CBD) July 19, 2015

Here's the menu and the pic's. As good as ever.
Truffle marshmallow

Burnham Beeches quail egg, shelled and dusted with mushroom powder

Oyster, an oyster is an oyster one doesn't need a pic but it had a nice dressing


What is one of them? Broccolina perhaps

Served with a light dressing surrounded by kale,

Prawn, cauliflower, almond, light and lovely

2014 Grosset ‘Polish Hill’ Riesling, Clare Valley, South Australia
Salt and pepper were not needed

Kingfish, kale, black radish

2012 Huber Weißer Burgunder, Baden, German

Duck yolk, pear, macadamia, truffle, for an extra fee you can have lots more truffles


2006 Louis Roederer Cristal, Reims, Champagne AOC, France
Sandra didn't care for barely cooked duck egg (it was delicious) and got a mushroom porridge with mixed mushrooms instead.


Cucumber, wood sorrel, a regular palate cleanser,

 complete with liquid nitrogen and a pestle.

Chefs work very hard at plating


Marron, mudcrab, fennel

2013 Patrick Piuze ‘Terroir de Chichee’, Chablis, Burgundy, France

Spanish mackerel, cabbage, red wine

2011 Cristom ‘Eileen’ Pinot Noir, Oregon, United States of America
Flinders Island lamb, leek, apple - don't know where the pic got to!

2010 Les Grands Maréchaux Côtes de Blaye, Bordeaux, France
Blackmore Wagyu, variations of turnips

2003 Yarra Yering ‘Dry Red Wine #1’, Yarra Valley, Victoria

Butternut squash, sunflower seeds, passionfruit

~Pear, celeriac, lemon myrtle

2012 Dry River ‘Late Harvest’ Riesling, Martinborough, New Zealand

Chocolate soufflé

You can't make them better than this

1986 Toro Albalá ‘Don’ Pedro Ximenez, Montilla-Moriles, Spain
Assortment of cheeses, bread, jams,

which we had in the bar

2013 Eric Bordelet Poiré Granit, Normandy, France
A selection of petit-fours. See previous posts for pic's of these.

2014 Grosset ‘Polish Hill’ Riesling, Clare Valley, South Australia

1986 Toro Albalá ‘Don’ Pedro Ximenez, Montilla-Moriles, Spain
 Yet anothe outstanding meal
Score: 18.5/20