It becomes a special occasion when Public Dining Room offers 50% off on food at the end of your meal. We did it last year and no doubt when Dimmi sent me an email with their weekly specials and Public Dining Room was listed, we knew there was no other option but to make reservations and eat our hearts out. But of course with such an epic deal, it never comes easy.
In order to claim the offer, you need to book via Dimmi or Urbanspoon but for days it told me my chosen date (the offer was limited to Monday, Tuesday or Thursday, before a certain date) was fully booked, which I of course did not believe. So I refreshed it constantly, tried during different times of the day and finally, one day opened up and I booked immediately. I tried to see if any other days were free but nothing. And soon after there were no bookings for any day yet again. It's quite a mystery but was it all worth it?
|Candied walnuts, murray river pink salt, $8.00|
|Marinated sa olives $9.00|
|Wild king fish carpaccio, chilli, capers, soy reduction, pomelo, sorrel, wasabi oil, $26.00|
|Fried zucchini flowers, ricotta, parmesan, papillon roquefort, celeriac & cabbage remoulade, pangrattato, $24.00|
|Chargrilled chicken breast, skordalia, honey & orange balsamic glazed radicchio, spiced hazelnut & wattleseed, $39.00|
|Broken nicola potatoes, marjoram butter, $9.00|
|Brodetto - italian seafood soup, white fish, prawns, scallops, black mussels, bruschetta, $40.00|
|Mango & lychee bombe alaska, coconut crumble, green mango, toasted meringue, $18.00|
|Textures of chocolate, vanilla creme, hazelnut crumb, passionfruit sorbet, $18.00|
Upon choosing this dessert, we interpreted the 'textures of chocolate' in its literal sense, we imagined various chocolate forms on a plate. So when the actual plate came to the table we were a little confused. On the plate lies a quenelled of sour passionfruit sorbet dotted vanilla cream on a floor of gold dusted hazelnut crumb. Now for the main event, the chocolate textured cake slice is rich and decadent. Beneath the dark chocolate casing are layers of white and milk chocolate textures: smooth and creamy perhaps a mousse, something in the middle that I've forgotten, and a biscuit like base. The sorbet contrasts the chocolate textures nicely but I do prefer the bombe alaska - it's really hard not to.
And to answer the question I asked at the beginning, yes it is. It's hard not to fall in love with the restaurant as it plays out the perfect setting for a beautiful meal. We got to taste some incredible creations that's inspiring and memorable which I'm sure we're going to reflect on for months. A chef's attention to detail doesn't go astray because you find yourself noticing depths of sensations and flavour combinations as you dive further into the dish and uncover more surprises. It becomes something more than just eating but receiving the full experience, the way the chef purposely intended.
2a The Esplanade