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Thursday, June 26, 2008

Dinner @ Interlude

It's taken much longer than we had planned to return to Interlude and with the end of the financial year approaching, why not celebrate it in style.

The photos are not the best, low lighting is the culprit so I can only say that if you want to see the full glory of the food - head off to interlude and experience it for yourself.

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Olive Our Twist
NV Manzanilla Sanluca de Barrameda, Barbadillo "Solear"

We tasted this dish as part of the Capaldi dinner here - this is a starter that is full of strong flavours, the salty robustness of olives and anchovies team with the rich sweet notes of roasted capsicum and olive oil toffee shards. This is a dish to not only grab hold of your taste buds, but slap them around and make sure that they won't be missing any nuances from the dishes to follow.

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Yam Chowder, Smoked Tofu, Char Grilled Squid
2006 Kabinett Riesling, Selbach-Oster

At the base of the bowl in a piece of smoked tofu - the tofu is actually made in-house and does a great job of being a flavour carrier. The chowder is silky and thick and is complimented by the tender squid.

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Fish out of Water
2006 Rias Baixas Albarino Lusco do Mino

With this next dish you get the chef himself coming out to pour the broth and explain the components. A separate bowl of "fish food" comes with this and it's a mix of wakame and flavourings that you get to sprinkle over your broth.

Wrapped around the breadstick straw is whiting which has been seared.

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It is a fun dish as you use the straw to draw up the broth and even if you take bites off the fish end it doesn't affect its ability to work as a straw.

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Rabbit, Lentis, Liquorice Beignets
2006 VDP Collines Rhondaniennes, Syrah Y Cuilleron "Sybel"

Slices of gently cooked rabbit are placed amongst two liquorice beignets - the jelly set into the base of the bowl just dissolves in the heat of your mouth, filling it with the flavour. The final touch is the mustard which just cleans the palate.

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Oyster, Horseradish, Passionfruit - Inspired by the Fat Duck
2006 Toscana, Teruzzi & Puthod "Terre di Tufi"

A most interesting dish - the passionfruit walks on that fine line of tartness but never crosses, it's pulled back into place with the horseradish shards and the salty creamyiness of the oyster. Basil seeds are also used to mimic the passionfruit seeds.


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Blue Eye, cooked in Roast Chicken Jelly with Trimmings
2005 Pyrenees Chardonnay Dalwhinnie Moonambel

Part of the trimmings are real baby asparagus of the type you just never see in the markets - there's also some fresh chanterelles and baby carrot. The blue eye is surrounded in a roast chicken flavoured jelly which works wonderfully with the fish - the jelly also has a low melting point to dissolve in your mouth.

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Lamb, Coffee, Redcurrant, Fennel
2004 Rioja Palacio Remondo "La Montessa"

There are two types of lamb here - the lamb sirloin and a slow cooked lamb neck, the coffee takes its place in a coffee couscous.

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Rhubarb, Rosewater
2007 Barossa Valley, Tobreck "The Bothie"

The pre-dessert is a study in pink - two quenelles of ice cream, the darker one at the bottom is rhubarb ice cream, the lighter one is a delicate rosewater ice cream. Rosewater can be a bit overpowering but the innate tartness of the rhubarb helps to pull in the rosewater.

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Chestnut, Hazelnut, Rosemary, Gianduja
2001 Wachau Auslese Gruner Velrliner, Weingur Knoll

One of my favourite desserts - hazelnut, chocolate and the haunting flavour of rosemary, certainly not a herb you'd usually associate with a dessert but it works so well here.

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Chocolate, Beetroot, Coffee, Pannacotta
NV Muscat Campbells

Ever since I first tasted beetroot jellies back in Fenix, I was a convert to beetroot being used in dessert and this dish keeps me firmly in the beetroot camp.


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Banana, Golden Syrup, Coconut, Pinenuts
2003 Sauternes, Chateau Roumieur-Lacoste "Leon Dubourdieu"

It's the coconut that brings a lovely freshness to this final dish of the evening.

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To finish a selection of petit fours.

It's been another fascinating evening with dishes that satisfy all the senses - they can challenge orthodoxy but they can also bring a touch of whimsy to the table. Each plate is a study that shows not only the quality of the ingredient but the quality and care of the people in the kitchen and those on the floor.


The details:

Interlude
211 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
Phone: 9415 7300

Open:
Lunch: Tuesday to Friday 12-3pm
Dinner: Monday to Saturday 6.30pm to late

web:
www.interlude.com.au

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