On a bummy Friday evening, F suddenly raised the question, “Are we going to SIFF this year?”
“You know I can’t do the ‘Let’s Do Lunches’ because of where I work,” I replied with a sad panda face. And somehow that led to us locking in two Sugar Hits to visit the following night (weird I know).
Our first stop saw us at Shangri-La Hotel. Forgetting what was on the menu for the evening, we were promptly seated and served the matching wine for the evening.
F was surprised to see the colour red in his glass this year, as throughout the previous year, every establishment we had visited served the same white dessert wine. The dark plum-coloured liquid turned out to be Cienna from Brown Brothers.
At first glance we oooh’d and aaah’d at the presentation of this dish (minus the gold-silver umbrella, which F thought was a bit over the top). We spied a vanilla bean panna cotta, chocolate cake, cherries, chocolate mousse and an abundance of tempered chocolate; ingredients one would come to expect from a Black Forest cake (minus the panna cotta I suppose hehe).
Unfortunately, the dessert was a bit difficult to eat. The chocolate nest and especially the round layer of tempered chocolate underneath proved tough to break through and made getting that perfect spoonful of every component quite challenging. Each forceful break created an explosion of the bottom layers as they were all squished together and up the side of the glass.
In any case, I thought the chocolate mousse was okay and the cherries had a nice sweet-sour flavour. Although the chocolate sponge was on the verge of being dry, it seemed as if it may have also been soaked in a little alcohol (which I nor F could name). I also tasted quite a strong alcoholic flavour in the panna cotta, which F quickly noticed as well.
Overall, the dish was alright and we were kind of left wishing that it tasted as good as it looked.
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Sydney, NSW, 2000
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