Friday, February 27, 2009

Dining at Quay

Quay (pronounced "Key") is a fine dining restaurant located in Circular Quay- the hub of Sydney Harbor. The restaurant is actually perched over the water at the overseas passenger terminal. The huge cruise ships pull into the harbor there. It is a beautiful spot with amazing views.

The food at Quay is totally unique. They offer a 4 course a la carte dinner menu at a set price of $145. The menu is in four parts- you make one selection from each section and viola, dinner is served!

Everyone who knows me knows I am not an adventurous eater. I'm going to have to change that when we move to Sydney. There really is no other option.

I didn't recognize most of the things on the menu- like confit of pig belly or green lipped abalone. Some of the things I did recognize didn't sound like something I'd want to eat- like smoked eel and jellyfish. So choosing something from each section was a challenge for me.

I chose:
Salad of green figs with goat's curd cigar (what???)
Poached Lobster with lobster and tapioca dumpling
Black Angus beef fillet (no, not "fil-ay", "fil- LET")
8 Texture Chocolate cake

When the food arrived it was beautiful. The presentation is obviously very important to the chef at Quay. Everything was arranged perfectly on the plate. Garnishes included lovely little fresh flowers. And I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty a salad of green figs can be. One thing I noticed though was that most of the food seemed to be somewhat gelatinous. The textures were just not what I'm used to. Lots of poaching and pureeing. The word "confit" appeared on the menu no less than four times. I've never even seen that word before.

I do want to mention that the eight texture chocolate cake was not really cake at all. It was more like a chocolate mousse on top of a cookie with self-serve chocolate sauce on top. The waiter kindly explained that the sauce was in fact, the 8th texture. This dessert was tasty. But it was so rich I couldn't finish the whole thing. (You read that right- I could not finish a chocolate dessert- shocking!)

Interestingly that led the waiter to ask if everything was okay, didn't I like it? Apparently, not finishing your entire meal is taken as some sort of sign that you were unhappy with it.

Dining at Quay was an experience. The view was lovely and the food was interesting. It's the kind of place you go to on a special occasion. And I guess our visit was a special occasion since it was my first visit to Sydney.

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