Saturday, May 29, 2010

Emad's Restaurant; Surry Hills

I'm working on a few other projects at the moment, so cooking and eating out have fallen by the wayside, along with blogging.

I had a rare night out at Emad's Restaurant in Surry Hills for a dear work friend's farewell. Emad's is a quaint little Lebanese restaurant with little rooms leading on to other rooms like a rabbit warren. Very cosy for a rainy night.

The restaurant has a run-down feel to it, which adds to the authenticness. The staff are friendly and cheerful, making for a warm environment.

Since we had a party of 10, we had the banquet menu including coffee or tea and baklava for $35pp. There were two of us vegetarians, so we received an alternate vegetarian banquet for the same price. We didn't see a menu or receive an explanation of the dishes, so I have no idea what they're called. The food was fresh, tasty and plentiful. I will definitely be back. Please excuse the bad photos - I was experimenting with and without my flash, so they're a bit odd.



The meat version - very nice presentation.

Vege version. No idea what was in them, but they tasted great.

Mixed vege dishes - spiced potatoes, capsicum, mushroom, etc.

No idea what these were, but they were kind of lemony ...

Bonus entertainment before dessert.

Baklava and Turkish delight. Exquisite.

Herbal tea - I think it was rose.

Emad's Restaurant
298 Cleveland St
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Phone (02) 9698 2631

Monday, May 10, 2010

Becasse Degustation Dinner, Sydney

The husband's birthday required a special dinner. I decided on Becasse purely because they offered a vegetarian degustation as a regular menu on their site, plus they have great reviews. I really appreciated having the menu to browse rather than turning up and hoping for the best, which is what I have to do at the majority of restaurants offering degustations. The staff tell me that they are really popular with vegetarians, and I can see why. Their menu is really delicious, with some creative dishes instead of the standard risotto and so on.

The standout dish was the dessert - it was amazing and I had to resist licking the plate lean afterwards.

I took photos of both of our meals, so the photos reflect the vegetarian and meat degustations. I decided to include the menus below instead of captions as this way you get a better view of what you get included in each menu - also, I couldn't remember which dish was which!

The menus offer matching wines. We only ordered wine with the husband's dishes as I had to drive home later. The wine was amazing, so I strongly recommend getting the matching wines for non-drivers. I have included the wines for the meat degustation since these were the ones we ordered. It ends up being about 3 standard glasses of wine in total, as a guide.

Vegetarian Degustation


Amuse bouche

Salad of organic autumn vegetables
pea mousseline, white carrot purée, black olive and lemon balm

Heirloom tomato and green zebra gazpacho
golden tomato and olive oil sorbet

‘Potage Quat’ Saisons’

Courgette flowers
salad of pine nuts, pomegranate and mint

Caramelised endive and pear gallette
butternut squash purée, cocoa nibs and walnuts

Tortellini of beetroot
sweet potato mousseline, brown onion consommé, rye bread and chestnut mushrooms

Passionfruit vacherin
mango sorbet

Fresh autumn berries
lemon verbena and white chocolate parfait, almond dentelle
Meat Degustation


Amuse bouche

Salad of organic autumn vegetables
pea mousseline, white carrot puree, black olive and lemon balm
2007 Hirsch “Heiligenstein”, Grüner Veltliner, Kamptal

Yabby tails and heirloom tomatoes
green zebra gazpacho, golden tomato and olive oil sorbet
2008 Caves de Pouilly-sur-Loire, Coteaux du Giennois, Sauvignon Blanc, LoireValley

Low temperature cooked Hapuka fillet
braised leeks and baby onions, clam beignets, curry and crème fraiche
2009 Allies “Saône”, Viognier, MorningtonPeninsula

Fricassée of king prawns and hand rolled macaroni,
local prosciutto and smoked crustacea butter
2008 Mac Forbes Pinot Noir, YarraValley

Braised pork tails and smoked scallops
caramelised calves sweetbreads, celeriac and congo potatoes
2006 Bodega Catena Zapata, Catena Malbec, Mendoza

Roast Gundooee organic grass fed wagyu
sauté of mushrooms, red wine and bone marrow
2008 Bress Shiraz, Heathcote & Bendigo

Crème fraiche pannacotta
kiwi fruit granita

Fresh autumn berries
lemon verbena and white chocolate parfait, almond dentelle
2009 Two Hands Brilliant Disguise Moscato, BarossaValley

204 Clarence Street,
Sydney 2000
Telephone: +61 (0)2 9283 3440