Tuesday, June 4, 2013


I think I'd better blog about this exquisite experience before the nitty gritty completely escape my mind. For my 25th birthday about two weeks ago, the hubby and I chose to celebrate it at what was voted the best restaurant in Australia. It was even listed on the S.Pellegrino's list of The World's 50 Best Restaurants, alongside Tetsuya's (which I am also very keen on visiting. Soon... soon...). Hmm, so, the prestige of a restaurant does extend beyond the ubiquitous (and sometimes dubious) Michelin stars, it seems but anyhow, MICHELIN, Y U NO PUBLISH A GUIDE HERE TOO! I can think of a number of deserving restaurants here!

Hmph. Anyway, moving on, the hubby had actually made a booking for it at the end of last year. We wanted to eat there last year when we first settled in in Sydney but sadly, there were no more available slots until after I had to fly back to KL. Quay is rather notorious for that so if you plan to eat there anytime in the near future, make your booking at least a couple of months in advance! AT LEAST.

I am sure most of you have seen the dishes' pictures on my Instagram but here they are again, with better resolution. Lo and behold!!

Firstly, the requisite ootd picture.

Dress is from LittlePartyDress.com.au!

With this picture below, I wish with all my heart it had been shot under better lighting conditions, but I had to snap one quickly before he could change his mind about taking a picture with me. =_=

With the love of my life

More selcas lol.

Trying out pink lips for the first time!

Be gone, pesky fringe!

We parked right outside the main entrance of the restaurant and upon walking in, were greeted with some of the friendliest staffs ever! After being promptly seated and having the meal choices explained to us, a quick discussion entailed in which we both decided upon the eight-course degustation. Priced at 225 dollars per person, it wasn't cheap at all but boy, was the experience worth it.

Just check out our view for the night! I was telling Jason that it reminded me of Nobu in Hong Kong and he agreed!

Nothing, just sitting here, chilling with ma Moscato wine...

They gave us this menu to keep track of the dishes after we had placed our order.

God knows I kept referring back to it for my Instagram captions; all in a day's work of the ever diligent foodstagrammer.


Congee of Northern Australian mud crab, fresh palm heart, egg yolk emulsion 

Salad of albino and chioggia beetroots, preserved wild cherries, goat's curd, scorched beet leaves, violets 

Red claw yabbies,
garlic scented custard, yabby velvet 

Roasted goose,
forbidden rice, black miso, hatsuka radish 

Smoked and confit pig cheek,
shiitake, shaved scallops, Jerusalem artichoke leaves 

Pasture raised veal,
bitter chocolate black pudding,
green walnuts, slow cooked wallaby tail, salsify, smoked bone marrow, chestnut mushrooms 

Andalucia citrus and almonds 

Guava snow egg Coffee, Tea Petits Fours 

And then the out-of-world excursion began. Never had I experienced such brilliant and utterly perfect execution of EVERY. SINGLE. DISH listed on the menu. EVERYTHING WAS AMAZING! You might call me out on having a really low threshold on what constitutes an amazing dish or not but even Jason who always seems to be able to find faults in the food he's eating said that there was nothing to fault with each one; and that he had a really hard time naming his favorite. He eventually named the congee his favorite, as he had always not been the biggest fan of seafood but found himself thoroughly enjoying it. I think it's mainly cause it's highly carby lol!

Anyway, first up was the amuse bouche. I have forgotten its name (see! Any longer and I won't even remember how everything tasted like) but it's basically some sashimi of sorts. One yummy mouthful later, the bar for the rest of the meal was set.... HIGH.

Amuse bouche
The first item in the menu didn't take too long to arrive, much to the pleasure of our ravenous selves. And did we lap it up! It tasted a lot like a very rich, decadent shark fin's soup to me, a denser and more flavorsome version, that is.

Congee of Northern Australian mud crab, fresh palm heart, egg yolk emulsion

Before I move on to the next dish, I would have you know that Jason absolutely detests salad of any kind. But there he was, savoring every bite of this with a faraway look in his eyes that suggested he had reached a gastronomic high point in his life. Have I mentioned that he hates salad?

Salad of albino and chioggia beetroots, preserved wild cherries, goat's curd, scorched beet leaves, violets

This next item consisted of yabbies sitting on a wobbly custard. For those not in the know, yabbies are a type of crustacean, or more specifically, crayfish that is quite common in Australia. We loved this to bits, though I would have to say that I couldn't really taste the garlic in the custard at all. Not complaining though; just an observation.

Red claw yabbies, garlic scented custard, yabby velvet

Almost halfway through the meal, we were presented with this. The bread was rather ordinary but the butter, oh GOD! Soft, melt-in-your-mouth, one-sparing-spread-just-wont-cut-it variety. I am salivating now just thinking about it.

Complimentary bread and butter

The next item came in a timely matter (read: before I could shove the entire leftover butter into my mouth). I remember telling Jason to not think of Yung Kee's roasted goose with plum sauce before digging in lol but it turns out, I didn't really have to as he wasn't the biggest fan of Yung Kee and was thus, blown away by this. The goose was a tad too rare for my liking but the crunchy forbidden rice with the radish were just, for lack of a better word, amazing. And you can't help but think how perfectly well each of the flavor complemented each other.

Roasted goose, forbidden rice, black miso, hatsuka radish

By then, I thought I had reached the limit of the amount of times that one could be blown away by goosebumps-inducing, explosion of flavors in the mouth. I was glad that I was wrong! The smoked and confit pig cheek was just about in the most perfect union with the scallops (pork and scallops, you just never know do you!). What's more, the smokiness of the pork came through really well and I am smiling now just thinking about how perfect it was. I do plan on eating this again in the future.

Smoked and confit pig cheek, shiitake, shaved scallops, Jerusalem artichoke leaves

I have a question; between these two dishes, how do these chefs know which ingredients would come together to produce such amazing results and what would not? For instance, I recoil at the mere thought of nasi lemak with roast pork. Okay, granted, these ingredients are more "sums of the parts" than the part itself but still... Hats off to Peter Gilmore, because....

You not only nailed that, but this next one as well! I don't believe you want to hear for the third time how perfectly well all of them complemented each other so I'm just gonna say this, it ended the savory part of the meal on a high note, and I was left wondering where all that time had gone (We spent a total of 2 and a half hours in the restaurant).

Pasture raised veal, bitter chocolate black pudding, green walnuts, slow cooked wallaby tail, salsify, smoked bone marrow, chestnut mushrooms

The first (out of three) dessert of the night. I didn't know what to expect with this one so I digged in without much thought. Upon the first mouthful, I was stunned and subsequently told the hubby that "I think that this is the most perfect dessert I have ever had in my life" amidst his nods of approval interspersed by multiple "oh wow". Sweet and slightly savory at its finest.

Andalucia citrus and almonds

Now,  I do not watch Masterchef Australia but even then, I think I knew more about the famed snow egg than the most religious follower of the show lol. Came from reading a food blog too many yo! Go read about it. Apparently, it is very hard to execute. I was so excited about it that when the waitress was bringing ours over, I exclaimed, "Oh my God, the snow egg!" and the waitress laughed and said, "So I suppose this needs no introduction then."

Ladies and gentlemen, THE guava snow egg!
The guava snow egg destroyed

I absolutely loved it, and so did the hubby. It was a sweet (but not overly so) harmony of textures and subtle flavors.

And finally, we came to an end with the petit fours. All four balls of chocolate had a distinct taste from one another and we left feeling full and very happy. Abrupt end, bye!

Petit fours

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