Dan Stock reviewed Laura, the final piece of the Pt Leo Estate puzzle, for the Herald Sun where Phil Wood's mushrooms stole the show. "Meaty “lion’s mane” mushrooms from Benton’s Rise farm in Tuerong, poached in chicken stock until just soft, served under a pretty crown of the sweetest carrots with diced abalone for textural heft. A shiso-spiked beetroot puree is poured at the table, the lot combining to transform earthiness into meatiness and into a stunning dish." He loved it. (17/20)
Besha Rodell reviewed Brisbane's Gauge for The New York Times. "Gauge’s dedication to pleasure is front and center on the plate, but it also comes through beyond the cooking. The small space takes on a broody vibe at night, but it retains the casual feel of a cafe. There is no pretense of formality here, yet the service is remarkable. Mr. [Jack] Brooks will remember a customer who stopped in briefly weeks earlier; he will crouch beside your table, look you in the eye, and guide you toward a meal that suits your needs."
In Sydney, Anthony Huckstep reviewed Bar Patron, the newest venue from Neil Perry and Rockpool Dining Group, for delicious. on Sunday "Empanadas are large, crisp, light and filled with superbly spiced beef mince. A mango salsa adds spark to slightly seared tuna and creamy guacamole tostadas, then the sweet caramel of charred pineapple partners grilled pork on a trio of tiny tacos. Dense, yet light tortillas provide a vehicle for red rice, de repollo (cabbage), and grilled flathead, while pork mole enmoladas are pleasing, too." (4/5)
John Lethlean raved about the revamped Carlton Wine Room for The Weekend Australian Magazine. “I found a kind of gustatory nirvana in a dish simply called ‘Heritage tomatoes, anchovy dressing, basil’. A hundred chefs would turn this to cotton wool with average ingredients but here, the promise is fulfilled: beautiful, juicy, tasty chopped tomatoes of various hues and genetic strains, a dressing made with great oil and excellent Cuca anchovies, and small, pungent basil leaves. With outstanding bread to dunk, what else could you need?” (4/5)
Gemima Cody eschewed the new in favour of the old for The Age Good Food's plant-based issue, revisiting Maha and testing its vegetarian degustation. "The strongest dishes are those devised from scratch rather than reverse-engineered to remove the meat. A borek shaped like an escargot pastry filled with a sharp garlicky mix of spinach and mushrooms and crowned with toasty slices of pine mushroom is all killer. An eggplant double-act sees a fudgy plank dressed with the smoke of baba ghanoush, sweet pops of pomegranate and a rubble of herbs and fried shallots." She chose not to score it.
And finally, Terry Durack also immersed himself in the world of plant-based cooking at Alibi at Ovolo in Woolloomooloo for SMH Good Food. "Kim chi dumplings ($18) look the business. Their fluorescent green skins have been fashioned from compressed and dehydrated young coconut flesh and coriander and filled with a mix of pureed kimchi, cashew, tamari and raw tahini. Topped with a ginger foam and placed on a blood-red drizzle of fermented red cabbage, they taste... clever. They also remind me of nut pate, the stuff of a thousand nightmares created in that Early Vegan era known as the 1970s." (14/20)
Bentley evolution: new menu, more wine, better space. Gourmet Traveller
Jamie's Italian restaurant empire implodes. Business Insider
est.'s Peter Doyle steps back from the burners. Good Food
Meet the designers behind your favourite restaurants. delicious.
Josh Niland opens his fish butchery. Gourmet Traveller
Jason Atherton exits Kensington Street Social. Good Food