Happy New Year everyone! We all love food and this post is gonna be about food because the only memorable thing I did on the first day of 2016 is eat food…good food. Given that most things were closed on New Year’s Day, my sis and I bought Kracie’s Popin’ Cookin from a Chadstone grocer last week and we decided to give them a go. This was basically our breakfast for the day, we got so caught up preparing these mini donuts to the point we forgot we were actually hungry. The donut mix was pretty tricky only because everything on the box is completely in Japanese and we had no idea how much water was needed….we mistakenly added too much at first! Luckily for us visual girls there were pictures we were able to refer to behind the packaging. In the end there wasn’t much to follow as it was just mainly mixing water with powder.
Ta da! This is all completely edible and they smell very nice. I always love it when my Mom and I get to spend the holidays with my sis. She currently lives in Jakarta so we don’t see her frequently but when we do, we do as much as we can together even if it’s a little creative activity at home.
For lunch we made Indomie kuah (Indonesian instant noodle soup), I find this stuff very filling, super tasty and honestly the best quality instant noodles I can find on the market. It’s been a while since I’ve last had one…of course this should be eaten less than in moderation.
Finally dinner, at Dinner! Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. Anyone who watches Masterchef like me would obviously know who Heston is. Ever since watching the first few seasons of Masterchef I’ve adored Heston’s guest appearances and wondered what it’d be like to dine in any of his restaurants. His first restaurant in Crown Casino, The Fat Duck, opened mid 2015 and the only way you could get in is to win a ticket. Now, Dinner By Heston replaced The Fat Duck and no you don’t need to win a ticket for this thankfully! It only opened here in November and there’s also another one in London. I wanted to book a table straight away but they were booked out for all of December and the next available one was on the night of New Year’s day.
To put it simply, dining here is the best start to any new year I’ve ever had. It’s natural to have high expectations when it comes to fine dining and I’m usually harsh. But folks, this is molecular gastronomy at its finest. The restaurant entrance is a narrow hallway with dimmed lights, as you get closer to the end you’re faced with a screen that plays footage of people preparing food and you immediately think you’re at a dead end. The doors are so easy to ignore, no handles on sight they look like walls but wait a few seconds and the black doors on the side automatically open. I’d also like to randomly mention the toilets, the toilet’s entrance are so abstract and minimal. This place is clearly against the use of door handles! Also they use vintage Molton Brown handwash products…damn it takes me back to uni when we had to study the brand’s expensive history.
For the entree we tried the famous ‘Meat Fruit’ which is essentially a mandarin skin, chicken liver parfait dish served with grilled bread. You’d think it’s a sweet dish – a lot of it is savoury and is a very delicious combination of sweet, sour and savoury with the mandarin gel and bread. The chicken parfait makes the perfect spread. We also tried the ‘Roast Marrowbone’ with snails, parsley, anchovy, mace & pickled vegetables. The textures are so unique, bone marrow is very fattening but this dish is so light you don’t even notice the marrow and the snails are like softer versions of squid. It’s sooooo good.
Waiting for the mains took a while since the dishes were brought altogether and some take longer to cook than others. The mains were cooked to perfection, all of them. We ordered the restaurant favorites: Black Angus Ribeye, Roast Snapper in Cider and Slow cooked Pork Belly. The marbling on that Ribeye is graded 9, meaning it is the highest form of beef in terms of flavor and tenderness. The fine textured fat contained within the muscle is visible on the meat, hence the “marbling” effect. Yep, I learned so much about meat that night! I’ll leave it at that for now, it was a truly enjoyable experience thanks to the exceptional service from the friendliest staff and the accompaniment of my Mom and sis. If there’s an opportunity to come back here again I’d definitely try the Powdered Duck and the Tipsy Cake.