Thursday, 30 June 2011

All hail the King of the Test Kitchen

Remember the prize I won with my food/wine pairing from good guy jamie who over at aficionado, well last night was the eagerly anticipated night.

'The Fantastic Eben, Adi and Luke show'-  at The Test Kitchen in Woodstock- 11 sensational courses, inspired pairings with fine wines I won't forget and the chef -  Luke Dale Roberts is the King.

You know that feeling when you've experienced something so awesomely spectacular that you feel compelled to stop absolute strangers to tell them how wonderful it was.... well, that was how good it was.

A treat to see the action- such talent
I'll start at the beginning, how cool is that menu?  A quick glance and I knew I'd somehow pleased the culinary gods- all of my favourites were there, oysters, tongue, sashimi, tuna, duck, sweetbreads, oh my beating heart....

the clever 'art teacher' got the menu for me- I'll hang it in the kitchen for inspiration

The first course, tiny perfectly poached quails eggs on truffle infused toast, the little yolk oozing onto the toast and the truffle oil oozing down my chin, oh my delight.... the Cellar Hands white was sublimely subtle.

Next those oysters with that mysterious 'soba dashi' and the funky white, 'wow' pairing, unexpected sensations as the oysters tame the wine.

Onto the wine I'd been dreaming of  tasting, Sadie Family Palladius 2008, way out of my price range and now that I've had such a wine, I am once again happily ruined.
It was paired with the yellowtail sashimi -  melting sashimi, crunchy chick peas & edemame and that soy milk yuba I'd happily convert to vegetarianism for, utterly delicious combination.

Another surprise was the tomato & miso cream cheese mousse with the Sequillo Cellars Red 2008- I'm embarrassed to say I  actually took my finger to the plate to this one.

Tuna tataki
My favourite...I think, too hard to choose, the foie gras, red cabbage and fig 'mi-cuit' - words escape me and with another curveball, Sequillo White Port 2010- unexpectedly perfect.

Aaah, the veal tongue, as it came to the table, a hint of  the scent of  the American oak veloute, sensational  with another wine favourite Mrs Kirsten's 'The old vine chenin' 2007, wish you could all have tasted it..
I'm a big fan of Chenin Blanc and was swooning with the whites.

Veal tongue and scallop

Just look at that bottle and label- art!
Stop... see that hand, cradling the precious bottle, it belongs to the charming Simon, his knowledge and service was simply stunning, explaining the wines, their origins, the motivations, the stories and the pairings- in fact his whole team was elegance in motion, timing perfection- very rare.

The warm duck salad...hmmm
Simply put- this was the best food experience I've ever had and actually, excellent value for money, think of those wines and that menu- I know we'll be thinking about them for a long time....

Luke Dale Roberts taking a well deserved break talking with patrons

Woodstock side street on the way home


  1. I couldn't help but notice how different the food listed as wonderful compares to the items that might be considered wonderful by a Midwestern American's palette! We aren't as sophisticated here. I'm afraid!

  2. Haha Rachelle, I promise you would have loved everything! I hadn't tasted a few of the Asian things like the yuzu dashi jelly and soy milk yuba- but wow what a treat.

  3. dont know how i got here and what i am doing perving over this page but there! where in woodstock?

  4. haha- I'm glad you did arrive here!
    They are in the Biscuit Mill in Woodstock, but unfortunately closed for a short break between 10 Sept- 20 Sept, but it'll most definitely be worth the wait.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...