First meal back from Sydney saw N and I headed to The Manse in North Adelaide taking advantage of their 5th birthday deal: A five course degustation for $85.00 including champagne. We were both looking forward to dinner considering that The Manse had been on our ‘to try’ lists for quite some time. The restaurant won ‘Restaurant of the year‘, ‘Best fine dining‘ and ‘Chef of the year‘ at the SA Restaurant and Catering Association Awards for Excellence in 2010 so our expectations were sky high!
Exterior, interior, pineapple juice and Pimm’s cup; $5.00 and $16.00
Complimentary bread with butter and salt
Amuse bouche (?? with Thai green curry foam and fish roe)
To kick things off, we start with fresh baked bread and an amuse bouche of either lobster or crab or maybe even scallops with Thai green curry foam and fish roe (I’ve forgotten!). An amuse bouche is “served as a little tingler for the taste buds both to prepare the guest for the meal and to offer a glimpse into the chef’s approach to cooking.” (via Wiki) N and I both found the amuse bouche different and interesting; the foam was pungent and airy with the burst of salty fish roe. It looked like it was going to be a very interesting and experimental meal for us judging from this. 😛
Sugared cereal, Roast Duck Jelly, Dill Buttermilk
So pretty! The salmon was confited and served cold with its accompaniments. Unfortunately, we both found the salmon, most notably the skin to be rather chewy – it was a battle trying to cut it up with our cutlery which eventuated in yours truly tearing the skin off as one piece and chewing it down. Classy. Overall, the flavours were quite subtle and light. My favourite element of this dish was the sugared cereal! A slightly sweet and crispy crunch to mix things up. Yum.
Next up… dessert!
‘Already?’ you say? Look a bit more closely 😉
Cauliflower, Cocoa, Pear, Beetroot
As soon as this dish arrived, N and I gave each other quizzical looks as if to say… ‘We’re nearing the end of our dinner… already?!’ We couldn’t have been even more wrong! What looks like dessert was a savoury dish of boudin noir aka black sausage topped with spheres of pear dyed in beetroot juice and a sliver of chocolate. Now I’m quite the adventurous eater so this didn’t phase me at all (it also helps that there’s a similar Asian counterpart of pigs blood jelly often served with congee) but N on the other hand had never had such a thing but was willing to give it a go! Kudos!! The boudin noir is super rich, creamy and velvety paired with a rich cauliflower puree. Delicious but so thankful for the spheres of juicy sweet beetroot pear adding a much needed freshness to cut through the richness. The chocolate went perfectly with the dish too!
Phew… by now I am struggling to fit anything else in and we were just about half way through!
Northern Territory Mulloway
Kohlrabi, Wild Samphire
White Asparagus, Morel
Rangers Valley Sirloin
Carrot, Pickled Vegetables, Smoked Marrow
Delicious! Delicious! The mulloway was delightful; crispy salty skin with juicy moist fleshes of mulloway meat however the wild samphire was a bit tough and chewy (the greens).
Our eyes lit up when the sirloin came out. (MEAT!! In particular, beef!) The sirloin, like the salmon, was confited and then slightly seared off and served cold. What a bummer for us cause we were hoping for say… a good ol steak. Like a really really good steak! Heh. Overall, nice flavours with lots of textures from the veggies and smoked marrow. Mmm.. smoked marrow.
Salted Caramel, Jelly, Chocolate Crispies
A complimentary palate cleanser from the chef – a mango dessert with coconut cream, sago and dehydrated mango(?) pieces. I managed one mouthful and savoured the little bubbles of sago slowly. (buttons were undone at this point and I could not physically eat another thing)!
They really saved the best for last. The chocolate peppermint dish was superbbbbb! Shame I couldn’t get through it but man. SO. GOOD. The texture, colours, plating, taste… and it had peppermint. I. LOVE. PEPPERMINT. <3
Overall, enjoyable dinner, friendly and helpful service and lovely food.
142 Tynte Street
North Adelaide SA 5006