And that's a wrap...
In our last Intel for 2018, we want to take the opportunity to wish you all a safe and Happy Christmas and New Year. May your festive feasts be filled with good food and great wine and may you be surrounded by the people you love. We'll be back with more industry news in late January 2019. Until then: bon appetit.
Terry Durack reviews the crazy, pub-style izakaya that is Goryon-San for SMH Good Food. "You can, of course, order stuff that isn't on a stick. Goma salmon is a hearty dish of big fleshy furls of raw salmon teamed with green leaves, edible flowers and nori seaweed, scantily dressed with sesame cream. But really, Goryon-San is all about the sticks. Hakata, on the island of Kyushu, is where pork belly meets kushiyaki – and what food on a stick could not be improved by being wrapped in pork belly? But somehow, the tightly packed lettuce wrapped in pork belly, the bacon-wrapped scallop and even the buta bara of cubed pork belly are all plain old bland." (13/20)
Gemima Cody went full-immersion pizza in a "dark and dangerous den for good times", aka Leonardo's Pizza Palace, for The Age Good Food. "Stanton's pizzas are intense beasts of burden with a heavy toppings-to-base ratio reminiscent of old-school Aussie creations – albeit with better cheese and a proper fire-charred crust. Unlike Capitano's plain cheese pie, which is made to be embellished, each slice here, loaded with fior di latte and the house mix of monterey jack, mozzarella and provolone, leaves a good foot of stretch behind. Flavours then run the gamut from ham and pineapple (everything you remember, with better ham) to spicy, saucy Chinese bolognese zinged with a little Sichuan pepper, a pepperoni assembled with OCD precision and the essential vegan entry starring kale, broccoli and macadamia cream." (14/20)
Gemima also penned an icon review of the humble and timeless Vegie Bar for The Age Good Food. It's a reminder that bliss can be found in beer and buddha bowls. "These guys were rocking a raw lasagne, using dehydrator-intensified veg and cashew cheeses to pump up the volume, right in sync with LA's raw craze. Lately they've been riding the buddha and soul bowl wave, creating mosaics on brown rice and quinoa bases with avocado fans, seeds, falafels and sweet pickled ginger. There are slow foods like chickpeas cooked for hours until they melt into soothing stews, and faux Big Macs and jackfruit tacos anyone can party with – and does."
John Lethlean was impressed by the brave and bold Chow’s Table in Margaret River for The Weekend Australian Magazine. "Excellent, turmeric-heavy achar achar, the palate-cleansing Malay pickled vegetables with peanuts and sesame. Wonderful, sticky shiitake and pork siu mai steamed dumplings crowned with tobiko, skins made in-house. And what is almost certainly the best-selling soft/sweet milk bun filled with subtle XO crab mayonnaise, iceberg lettuce and cucumber, a riff on the ubiquitous lobster roll. Braised strips of Bible tripe served with black vinegar, cucumber batons and liquid mercury-like puddles of Szechuan oil; crisp-shelled tablets of pan-fried pig heart in a subtle black bean sauce with pickled green chilli, for acid. Both a little brave, both worth trying." (3.5/5)
Brokenwood's spectacular new cellar door. Business Insider
Sepia restaurant closes a chapter of Australian gastronomy history. The Australian
Chef Aaron Turner likes his fried chicken hot, in more ways than one. AFR
Corned beef is Australia's top food Google search 2018. Good Food
Nigella's star shines brighter than ever. Good Food
GQ Men of the Year Tribute to Anthony Bourdain: The Last Curious Man. GQ
British restaurateurs preparing for Brexit. London Eater
The inaugural World Restaurant Awards shortlist. Restaurant Awards
Why the Slow Food Movement is driving some people to rebel. Eater
Hong Kong and Macau have new three-starred Michelin restaurants for 2019. Eater
Food for thought: exceptional European cookbooks by Bo Bech, Noma and others. Wallpaper
Could Eleven Madison Park be setting up shop in London? Eater