Jay and I celebrated our anniversary at Leeuwin Estate last year. We loved it so much we decided to take Dexian and Lynette here; and they loved it too. As usual, service was impeccable and the floral arrangements were beautiful. This time, we got the whole bench to ourselves. Coincidentally, its the same bench we got the last time! Ahh.
The amuse bouche was a wholesome chicken and corn soup. The corn sweetened cream soup warmed us up while the cold winds blew outside. There was terrible weather that weekend. Luckily for us, all us pregnant ladies could do was eat and chill out so it suited us fine. All the better to snuggle indoors near the fire!
Lynette and I ordered identical meals – limited by our pregnant states. The careful nature of other pregnant ladies influence me and so I’ve been doing something I never usually do – order the same dish as someone else!! For our entrée, we had the Blue manner crab soufflé seafood bisque, herb salad ($22). The soufflé was a lot eggier than expected – and it was cake-like. I was really expecting something meatier – which I guess was a little spoilt on my part. The blue manner crab is a difficult crab to peel (I remember the times I painstakingly removed flesh for a linguine) and I guess I was hoping for a treat. hehe. The bisque was really good though – thin but packed with assorted shellfish flavours. Lynette was slightly underwhelmed by the dish and didn’t like the strong flavour the parsley imparted to the dish.
The boys shared their entrée. The first being a dozen of Freshly shucked South Australian oysters with lime ($39).
Jay loves charcuterie ($26) and so he ordered it to share. It came with Sorpresa salami, duck liver parfait, jamón, jowl, estate made piccalilli and cornichons (fancy gherkins). I can’t say too much about it because, I could not try the meats. I tasted a little of the parfait though – it was very rich and strong flavoured.
For mains, Jay chose the Grilled snapper, Thai yellow curry, charred octopus, eggplant ($49). He has been watching his diet so this was a good way to go – plus he loves octopus. Like my previous experience, Leeuwin still knows how to do a good fish dish and have done very well with the freshly caught snapper. Crisp skin, juicy flesh in a flavourful mild curry sauce; fresh crunchy herbs and vegetables to freshen the dish. You cannot go wrong with a fish dish at Leeuwin.
Dexian loves his steak – and made a beeline for the Rangers Valley 300 day grain fed scotch fillet, truffle fondant, horse radish béarnaise, eschalots ($52) which he was very happy about. I did not try it (pregnant ladies have to be careful about undercooked meat) so we will have to rely on his opinion. Truffle fondant….I wonder what it was like!
Lynette and I might have chosen the best dish - Blue ridge roast marron tail, pork hock, caviar ($49). It was sublime and we didn’t just like it for its somewhat asian flavours. When in WA, its best to try this local shell fish – and it was a generous piece roasted with dots of caviar. Freshness ensured the sweet meat’s happy departure from its shell – and its juiciness as I crunched on the marron…was heaven. The salad was tangy papaya which is not too different from the Thai papaya salad. It fulfilled its purpose of adding crunch and another layer of flavour to the sweet pork hock cooked in a sweet soy sauce. Lovely.
We also had the French fries, rosemary salt, garlic, aioli ($8) but I did not snap a picture.
We were pretty full given the day was filled with eating so we shared dessert. Jay ordered the long time menu occupant Orange and almond cake, ginger ice cream, orange gel ($12). I can see why its been left there for a long time. This cake has been paired with different ice cream flavours successfully. The cake is moist and somewhat dense. Its citrus flavour and mildly spicy ginger ice cream complemented each other.
Lynette and I ordered the Mandarin Mille Feuille ($14.50) - the standout was surprisingly the chocolate ice cream/sorbet on the side. We were all very wowed by it. There was a sharp tanginess that came from the strawberry sour powder it sat on. The Mille feuille itself was really good too – cream custard and chocolate custard in between flaky pastry. It was very rich and I found the Mandarin gel slightly overpowering. Well, citrus isn’t usually my go-to dessert flavour so I might be giving this dessert an unfair review.
Regardless, we had such a fabulous time. The two pregnant ladies were happy and that meant happy husbands! I did not realise just how big I was until I saw this picture – all of 33 weeks and 5 days while Lynette was around 22 weeks. This will be a good one to show the kids in future!
Cheers to more gastronomic holidays!