Friday, 16 November 2007

glebe point diner

407 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe(02) 9660 2646

Birthdays are yet another excuse for me to try out a new restaurant, in this case the Glebe Point Diner (Happy Birthday, Pez!) Having heard mixed reviews about fellow diner's experiences, I (always one to want to formulate an opinion on my own) had to try it out.

On the menu:

Chicken liver pate with caramelised figs
Fennel salad with figs, parmigiano reggiano and soft herbs
Confit of duck with silverbeet, potato rosti and currants
White nectarine and mango set in jelly with vanilla bean custard.

The verdict:

I can't tell you how much I love chicken liver pate. Its so chicly retro in its stylings but with the gamut of amazing ways this dish has been reinvented, you have to try it. I found it to be an exposion of savoury flavours, definitely not too chalky or strong. The toasted sourdough and caramelised figs went beautifully with this and provided a great contrast to the richness of the pate. Do it.

Similarly, the fennel salad was really full of flavour - fresh in its cool aniseed and fig flavours but grounded by the earthy parmesan and olive oil flavours. The soft herbs were a nice (if not 'very now') touch.

Now comes the slightly disappointing part. And I preface it by saying that I LOVE confit of duck. If it's on the menu, I'm there. Disregarding my lack of fondness for silverbeet, I ordered the duck after being told that "You probably don't need a side order, it's pretty big".. from the very helpful waitress.

And 'pretty big' it was..the first restaurant I've been to where you are served not one but two, really meaty legs of duck. In its defence, the duck was cooked perfectly, with a crisp skin, soft, melting flesh and great flavour. The currants were a fruity contrast to the richness of the meat and the silverbeet wasn't overly wilted or devoid of texture or flavour.

Unfortunately the meal was just a bit 'too' much. Although I applaud a restaurant for its generosity, but here's an dish that probably should be a bit more sparing.

This meal was well and truly saved by the desert. After the hearty main, we were sought comfort in the cool, fresh sweetness of the jelly. (Again I love the old school comeback of jelly on the menu!). The fruit in the jelly was a nice texture contrast to the smoothness of the jelly and custard.

Go there if you want a posh version of old favourites served in a friendly, relaxed environment. Ask for an outside table if you want to laugh at backpackers falling over on the street with bags three times the size and weight of the person carrying it.