Bentley Restaurant & Bar, Surry Hills a.k.a Birthday Adventures Part II
After having had a divine lunch at Quay, and the come down of having to go back to work, I decided to carry on the seafood theme with a purchase of prawns and baby octopus to throw on the bbq as I would be dining alone that evening, as the Boyfriend was out for post work drinks. (Don’t look horrified. My actual birthday was the Sunday, this adventure took place on the Friday)..on the way home, I stopped at Thomas Dux Grocers on Crown st, to complete the items necessary for my meal, then remembered that friends were dining at nearby Bentley Restaurant & Bar. After seeing if they’d arrived I stopped in to share a drink on my way home. Somehow, I ended up joining them for dinner. So much for my prawns & occy! I’d been wanting to visit Bentley ever since it reopened in it’s new guise as restaurant and bar, after vague memories of the former pub being a venue for mid to late 90’s club nights.
We settle in after some great cocktails and peruse the menu and decide to share some tapas for entrees then move on to mains in order to cover the menu..
We start with the Serrano Jamon and Kingfish Ceviche, fantastic textures and gorgeously salty, sweet start to the meal:
We then tuck into the Foie Gras Parait with puffed wheat and raisins, spectacularly served as a squeeze on the plate, a theme to be repeated elsewhere during the meal:
The combination of the puffed wheat and raisins is inspired, the textures playing together beautifully, and a lovely change from the standard toasts often served with parfait. Next up, the famous chickpea chips. Slabs of pureed chickpea, ingeniously served as creamy, lush and surprising chips:
We were excited about our mains watching the delicious plates whiz past us on their way to other tables. As I had stuffed myself at Quay at lunch, I forgo a main, as I want to sample the desserts on offer, so I simply sample what the girl’s order. @Felixexplody goes for the roast spatchcock with sweet corn polenta and asparagus , and we are completely clueless that this was a featured challenge on Celebrity Masterchef until it’s served and I suddenly remember the rolled ball of spatchcock:
The spatchcock is moist, tender and tasty and perfectly rolled! The crumbed slab is also polenta…mmmmmyum! @hoffkate goes for the slow cooked lamb rump with jerusalem artichoke:
The lamb, again, was cooked so perfectly: tender, so moist and lush…
Dessert! As always my favourite part of the meal…I had heard whispers that Bentley’s desserts were something to write home about, and I wasn’t disappointed. What really impresses me is the range of small morsels that can be ordered individually, not quite petit fours, but less than dessert…what I love bout it, is that it means I can order all of them and have a multi course dessert! Woohoo!
This one was simply called honeycomb, a rich chocolate bar with caramel and honeycomb. It was incredibly rich and perfect for chocoholics..
Then, the milk marshmallow, toasted on top…
My first standout of the dessert course was these hot ricotta dumplings…little balls of lusciousness, and tongue burningly good:
The mango sauce was ok, but the dumplings on their own were fantastic…more please!
We then moved on to an actual dessert, @felixexplody ordering the cheesecake with spiced pumpkin ice cream. I would have ordered this if I were ordering dessert proper as I was so taken with the idea of pumpkin ice cream…
Yum. I’m not much of a cheesecake fan, often getting sick of the cheese, and seeking out the crust, but I like the delicacy of this deconstructed cheesecake, with it’s individual components spread out on the plate so you can dip in and out of the various elements. Match and mix if you will.
@hoffkate settles on the whipped Stilton. That’s right. You heard me WHIPPED CHEESE!
This whipped Stilton was served with spiced breadcrumbs and honey…a gorgeous combination.
I was so pleased with this meal, and loved the quirky combinations and flavours and textures put together by Chef Brent Savage, obviously inspired by the Spanish molecular gastronomy movement. There is an obvious relationship to the food of Mark Best up the street at Marque, though more playful and relaxed and less serious. Is Bentley Marque’s cheeky younger brother? I think so.
This meal occurred on the 23rd October 2009
Bentley Restaurant and Bar
320 Crown St (Corner of Campbell)
02 9332 2344