You’re certain to find something entertaining to your tastebuds at A’Mews, where quiet British refinement meshes with French decadence. My dining companion (the lovely shinannigans) and I stepped into the British looking space on a cold wintery night last week - the weather added to the atmosphere!
We were met by Dani, who manages the floor with friendliness and an obvious soft spot for the cuisine of Chef Richard Moyser (her husband). He apparently won her with a chocolate terrine, and keeps her with white chocolate ice-cream.
We were also met with a warm cup of Parsnip Soup (it appears vegetable soups are still the current amuse bouche of choice) which was lovely, but begged for a little pepper. With none on the table, I resorted to adding salt.
My brave dining companion agreed to accept Dani's suggestion - so we dined on the well-priced 6 Course Chef’s Degustation Menu ($72/head, $105/with wine) with the matched wine package. Dani then directed us to eliminate dishes that we didn’t fancy from the daily menu, and then the rest was decided in the kitchen. We were stoic, and eliminated nothing!
Our first offering was Seared Scallops with Crushed Sweetcorn, Crisp Pancetta, Roast Chicken WIng and Truffle Dressing ($22) which I wasn't too fussed with. The sweetcorn would probably have been better as a puree. It was like munching cud. The scallops were nicely cooked (ie not overcooked) and the chicken was particularly nice. I didn't get much of a truffle flavour from the sauce. I think this one looked better than it tasted, and was probably the weakest dish of the evening.
The second entrée of Ballotine of Rabbit ($21) stuffed with lemon and cinnamon, served with rabbit tortellini and chanterelle mushrooms, oozed with French sophistication. I'd have to award it my own dish of the night award.
I was also impressed with the main of Roast Barramundi ($33) on a bed of red wine risotto, with grilled king prawns, horseradish cream and oxtail sauce - a close second. My dining companion ate this one with relish, and I would hazard that it was her favourite course?
The Roast Glenloth Duck Breast ($34) was slightly overpowered by the lovely accompanying cassoulet. Incidentally though, the cassoulet of harricot beans, tomato, cotechino and crisp pork belly was lovely.
The Cheese Course ($30/ 4 cheeses) was quite good. I liked the selection, though I didn't like every cheese. The Fougerus (a French Double Brie) was a tad overripe, and tasted of ammonia. The second cheese is a Spanish sheep milk cheese, called Queso de Oveja Al Romero. It unfortunately had a rosemary crust which I hated. The third was the winner for me - the Holy Goat La Luna. It was a lovely, tangy Australian goats cheese that was at once creamy and citrussy. The final offering was Bleu de Basque (another French cheese, from a place not far from Roquefort). It was a big cheese - my dining companion loved it unadorned, but I preferred it with a little truffled honey.
Our palates were cleansed with a Pear and Sauternes Sorbet, which was lovely, almost creamy and sweet. It tasted like it was made on brown Beurre Bosc pears rather than green Packhams.
At the sweeter end of the scale, Richard managed to redeem The Trifle ($15) for me with a delicious combination of Sauternes brûlée with quince, mandarin and brandy snap. His Dark Chocolate Terrine ($15) is so sinfully rich, you might be better to share a small square on the Dessert Tasting Plate ($28). On our platter you can also see a Custard Apple Bavarois, some lovely lumps of Turkish Delight, and a Treacle Tart. There was a whole lot of sweet to this platter, and we struggled (and didn't) finish it all.
Wine list is affordable and imaginative – the Blackets 2006 Pinot Noir ($36/bottle, $8/glass) gets my nod. The space was warm and felt intimate. It's certainly a restaurant to consider!
99 Glebe Point Road, Glebe
Ph: (02) 9660 4999