>> August 8, 2010
If you were one of the 3.96 million Australians who watched the Masterchef finale, then you know about the Snow Egg. It was the last round of the finale where Adam and Callum had to recreate Peter Gilmore's dessert.
My curiosity had been aroused after watching the finale and I was delighted to discover that Quay's three course lunch is actually quite reasonably priced (in my opinion). It is $75 for 2 courses, or $95 for 3 courses. Of course, the Snow Egg is one of the dessert options.
So we made a booking for a weekday lunch - absolutely decadent for a lunchtime during work hours!
For those who don't know about Quay, it is a 3-hat restaurant located at the Overseas Passenger Terminal in Circular Quay. It has been awarded 3 hats for eight years in a row! It has also won Restaurant of the Year numerous times and even places on world restaurant rankings.
Suffice to say, I was super excited and made sure to charge my camera batteries in preparation for some snow egg photos.
The weather was beautiful and we were seated on the upper floor of Quay where an amazing view of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House awaited us.
The menu was placed in front of us and we pretended to peruse it as though we hadn't already decided two days ago what we wanted.
Complimentary bread and butter were brought out and the bread was generously re-offered throughout the meal.
I was charmed by the placing of the knives, blade down on the table.
The first item to come out was the amuse bouche.
The flavours packed into this small glass were amazing. It was a great start to the meal.
For my entree, I had decided to have the sea pearls. After seeing so many photos of the sea pearls, I knew what they would look like and they did not disappoint.
L-R: crab, octopus (the little white balls are egg-white!), scallop, tuna sashimi
Each sea pearl had a different filling. Here is an example of what was inside the mud crab pearl. It was covered with tiny tapioca pearls.
My colleague ordered the mud crab congee.
Hand-shelled mud crab, palm hearts, Chinese inspired split rice porridge
She said that it tasted delicious.
We had ordered a side of potato puree. When it came out, I couldn't help but admire how it had been artfully spooned into the bowl.
The potato puree was deliciously buttery and silky smooth.
For my choice of main, I was previously undecided between the fish or duck. Fish or duck. Duck or fish. Ah, the tough choices we have to make in life....
Since I often lean towards meat, I chose to swing against the grain (is that a saying? Or did I just make that up....) and went for the fish.
smoked butter and celeraic cream, green garlic, fennel, leeks, young greens
The fish was lovely and soft, falling apart with a slight press of my fork.
However, my colleague went for the duck, and after having a taste - I think I made the wrong choice.
winter melon, hasuimo, garlic chive buds, sea scallops, duck juices
Because the duck was AMAZING! The meat was piping hot and fatty. I didn't try a scallop but she assured me that they were cooked perfectly. I wanted more bites but had to restrain myself to finishing my fish.
There was a slight lull in the meal while the staff cleared the table of crumbs. Throughout the lunch, we had noticed numerous snow eggs coming out and were anxious to try the famous dessert ourselves.
We had strategised beforehand - only one of us would order the Snow Egg so that we could taste another dessert as well.
Note: the Snow Egg on the menu was different from the one made on Masterchef! Instead of a guava and custard apple snow egg, it was a jackfruit snow egg on offer. :(
Anyway, without further adieu.....I reveal the Snow Egg!
My colleague leaned forward in anticipation as I lowered my fork to crack into the egg. And yes, it did make a satisfying crack!
How did it taste? I am reluctant to say this but I always write what I genuinely think about the food so - I wasn't blown away. I wouldn't order it again. The Snow Egg was beautifully presented and makes for pretty photos, but it wasn't to my taste.
It was too sweet. The tuile which forms the protective bubble sticks to your teeth with every mouthful (although some people might like that!). Maybe it was the fact that it was jackfruit? I've never tasted jackfruit before, and the flavour in the Snow Egg was slightly bitter.
This was the other dessert that we selected off the menu. Isn't it pretty? The waiter poured on the liquid dark chocolate that's on the top of the cake after he set it down on the table.
The cake was unbelievably chocolate-y. Exactly as you would expect from an 8-textured chocolate cake! Definitely made for sharing - or it could be polished off alone by the diehard chocoholics out there. Very more-ish indeed.
All in all, Quay was a great experience. Service was impeccable and the harbour views were amazing. I am tempted to go back again - just so that I can have the pressed duck confit for myself!