Saturday, 30 July 2016

Rockpool Est. 1989 - The End of a Delicious Era

If you've been living under a rock (pool?) you may not have heard that Neil Perry's jewel in the crown, Rockpool Est. 1989 is closing its doors for good tonight.

Before you begin to fret, please be assured that the talented Mr Perry will not be leaving us without Rockpool Bar and Grill, Spice Temple or any of the other restaurants that are part of the Rockpool Group. In fact, Eleven Bridge, an a la carte reincarnation of Rockpool Est. 1989, opens on the 8th of August.

As a last hurrah, and as a belated engagement celebration, my better half and I opted for the degustation. That's right. Eight of the chef's signature dishes, delicately crafted to appeal to all senses. Here is how it went.

Within moments of being seated, we were greeted with freshly baked bread, smokey butter cream and  ricotta with pear.

Course by course, every part of my palette was tickled.

1. Western Australian truffle with Jerusalem Artichoke, apple and strawberries
 Zesty and light. Even the olive oil was fruity and fresh.

2. Kingfish sashimi on enriched Koshihikari rice with Japanese peach and mirin dressing
My favourite savoury course of the night. Pure perfection. I'm praying that it's an option on the a la carte menu at Eleven Bridge.

3. King prawn mousse, rolled in pangrattato, on squid ink sauce 
Delicate and sweet, with a bit of crunch.

3. King prawn mousse- it's what's on the inside that counts
4. Abalone 'Meuniere' with puffed rice and herb salad- before serving

4. Abalone 'Meuniere' with puffed rice and herb salad- after serving

Abalone shell
I can't say that I ever go out of my way for abalone, but this I did not mind. Impressive tenderisation of the usually chewy flesh. 

5. Burrawong Chicken roasted with a hot, sweet and sour sauce
 Think buffalo wings. The fanciest buffalo wings ever.

6. Blue Mountain Wagyu softly grilled, served with oxtail sauce, wasabi and fresh lime
 So tender I didn't have to chew. The thing is, I reaaaally wanted to.

Right after this course, the waiter asked "Would you like a break?"
I had to stop myself from saying, "Break? Please." I opted for a, "No thank you," and kept the goodies rolling.

7. Vacherin of pandan custard with coconut parfait, jasmine sorbet and lime granita
 The thinnest most crisp meringue-like case, filled with pandan custard that made me think of the smoothest brûlée I've ever eaten.  The decadence is perfectly offset by lime granita and an oddly delicious jasmine rice sorbet. I would've happily ended on this course (and eaten another six serves if given the option).

My love's 'Frozen' version of #7. Do you want to build a Snowman?
 Don't judge. He joined me for a fancy pants degustation when all he really wanted was a snack pack.

8. Date tart- original since 1984 and White chocolate and finger lime

8 continued... Valrhona chocolate with macadamia, malt and burnt orange ice cream
Oh my... Every taste bud was turned on by this beauty. Jaffa's richer and much sexier older sibling. I will never know how that toffee shard was crafted, or how it remained crisp and in tact even after five minutes or so. 
8. Underneath that toffee
Wow. Just wow.

Goodnight Rockpool Est. 1989. I thank you for our memorable engagement dinner and cannot wait to see what will become of you.

Eleven Bridge blog to come!

No comments:

Post a Comment