Archive for the ‘Syd: Randwick’ Category

Celebrations at Restaurant Balzac, Randwick

September 22, 2010 2 comments

It has been a while since I last saw my friend C, and by a while I mean 5 over years! It was our love for food that brought us together and we went to Restaurant Balzac to celebrate two occasions. The first being that C recently passed his exams / course – WELL DONE buddy! The second, my return to Sydney.

This is not my first visit to Restaurant Balzac (read review here), but it has been a while since my last visit. I still do remember the bread and butter pudding as it is still one of the best bread and butter pudding I have had thus far. Unfortunately, we didn’t order any, I was a tad full, and was a little cautious about this so called ‘high cholesterol’.

Anyway, we started off with Sonoma bread with butter which was sprinkled with salt. The bread was fresh and the butter deliciously creamy and salty at the same time.

The degustation started off with the salt cod beignet. It was a perfectly round bite size beignet, tasty and a little salty. I could have easily eaten two on my own, alas, one each.

Tomato consommé with poached prawns, was served cold, which took me by surprise. I was expecting something warm, however, this was refreshing and served in a gorgeous little tea cup. The poached prawns gave it a nice touch.

Marinated black kingfish and ocean trout with orange, fennel and poached scampi tail. This was marvelous – the kingfish and ocean trout was fresh, the poached scampi tail, divine and the orange and fennel gave it a nice touch. I really enjoyed this dish!

Pan seared mirror dory with baby carrots, toasted cumin and dried orange skin. The dory was lovely and beautifully done the baby carrots were tender. The burnt baby carrot was interesting to say the least. It didn’t have that ‘burnt’ flavour, it still tasted like a carrot! The orange gave it a nice touch. C thought this was the dish of the night, I enjoyed this dish too, but I think I still do prefer the previous dish.

Truffled pigs head carpaccio, trotter canapé, crisp ears and parsnip remoulade. My eyes lit up as soon as the waitress said ‘pig’ – I don’t think I heard anything else! We started with trotter canapé first, and this was absolutely scrumptious! The canapé was salty with a small serve of crispy skin which was crunchy, chewy, and sensational! The crisp pig ears and truffled pigs head were a little bit disappointing. The crisp pig ear was a little tasteless I thought, boring, and the truffled pigs head was a little bland. C and I thought we ‘may’ have eaten the dish  in the wrong order, which could be true!

We had a choice of the lamb and the beef. Since I am not a huge fan of lamb, I opted for the short rib of beef with sauce bordelaise and parsnip fondant, served with bone marrow. The beef was incredibly succulent and tender, the parsnip fondant a great compliment and the bone marrow, magnificent!

Here is a close up of the bone marrow. hmhmhm bone marrow, I would have been happy to eat two more bone marrows on my own! Yes.. very greedy I know, but I LOVE bone marrow and this was perfect! This was probably the dish of the evening for me.

C had the roast rack of lamb with petite sale aux lentils. I had a tiny piece of this as I am not a huge fan of lamb, however C said ‘that the lamb was beautifully cooked, but otherwise nothing too special’. I don’t think he was a fan of the lentils!

Pimms and Lemonade was a cleanser, before dessert, to clean your palate. I enjoyed this, it was refreshing and light, and I thought the cucumber gave it a nice flavour. However, C did not like this, he is not a fan of cucumber, and felt that it would have been better without it!

Last but not least, dessert, warm chocolate fondant with Seville orange ripples ice cream.

Chocolate oozed out and oh my, it was deliciously rich and deliciously chocolatey! The orange ice cream was delicious, it had the right amount of acidity to balance out the richness of the chocolate. My only gripe would be that it was a small dollop of ice cream. I would have appreciated a little more ice cream!

The ambiance was pleasant, the service excellent. The meals were well presented. C felt somewhat unsatisfied, he believed that the portion was a touch on the small side and nothing had a real ‘wow’ factor.

Did I agree with C’s comment, I had one ‘wow’ factor, the beef dish with bone marrow. The bone marrow was a winner for me. I also enjoyed the marinated black king fish and ocean trout with orange, fennel and poached scampi tail. The daily degustation was $95pp not including the wine. They have daily degustation as well as monthly degustation which takes place on the last Sunday of each month – 9 courses for $110 not including wines.

It was great catching up with my dear old friend C and thanks again for dinner! This won’t be the last time we dine; we both have a long list of restaurants we would like to try. I am more than happy for C to review our next place.

C’s rating: 7 / 10

GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10

Restaurant Balzac

141 Belmore Rd

Randwick NSW 2031

Ph: +61 2 9399 9660

Restaurant Balzac on Urbanspoon

Restaurant Balzac

This was on my must try place for a while now and was finally glad when we finally went there! Situated in Randwick, Sydney, this place serves a combination of French and British food. The menu is quite intensive, ranging from fish, to white meat to red meat. They also have two different types of degustation, one of them is daily which includes 8 different types of dishes (including dessert) and the other is their famous once a month Sunday degustation meal.

I have yet to try the degustation menu, however, Hubby went for a friend’s dinner and he said it was fantastic – great value and great food! We didn’t have the degustation the last time we were there.

Hubby ordered the grain fed rump, oxtail with sweetbreads and bone marrow – this dish was delicious. The grain fed rump was cooked to perfection – medium rare and the bone marrow was soft and tender. Served with baby carrots, greens and onions this dish was simply divine.

I ordered the pan fried barramundi with a cassoulet of braised pork belly. The fish was fresh and tender, the cassoulet of braised pork belly was unbelievably rich but extremely tasty. It was a great compliment to the pan fried barramundi.

We ordered a side of roasted potatoes with beef dripping, rosemary and garlic. These potatoes were scrumptious! Slightly crunchy on the outside and fluffy and moist on the inside… the best roasted potatoes I have ever had.

Dessert was bread and butter pudding – and believe me, when I tell you that Restaurant Balzac makes the best bread and butter pudding! Unfortunately for us, I didn’t take a photo of what the bread and butter pudding looked like! I took a photo of what was left….

NOTHING! We absolutely demolished the bread and butter pudding, I think we even licked the plate and left nothing! It was rich, but not sickly, it was moist and melted in your mouth… it was heavenly! I think we may have to go back there just to have the bread and butter pudding! I think this dessert is one of their specialty and a must try for those who dine there.

GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10

Restaurant Balzac

141 Belmore Road

Randwick, Sydney

Ph: +61 2 9399 9660