Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Cecconi's Flinders Lane Restaurant & Cellar Bar

I was invited to Cecconi's for their relaunch and to try their new seasonal menu recently.

At the door, I was greeted by an array of canapes and drinks at the door, ranging from smooth velvety sweet corn veloute to melt-in-your-mouth pan-seared scallops served on a fancy spoon. With one hand holding a glass of Aperol Spritz and the other, a mouth watering San Daniele prosciutto-wrapped grissini, you could tell this was going to be a night to remember.

 The restaurant now features a clean, contemporary feel, thanks to the work of Mollard Interiors. The open space kitchen was a stage in its own right. There was also a sense of home in the restaurant, with family photos featured prominently on a wall.

Now on to the food! The first course served was a risotto, freshly shaved black truffles, parmesan and truffle oil. There was a generous serve of shaved black truffles that provided an earthy taste, and the risotto was well-done.

This was followed by a Chatham Island Blue Cod with Confit Tomato, Fennel, Fried Zucchini Flower and Aged Balsamic. The cod was amazing - perfectly cooked and seasoned and a dish strong enough to enjoy on its own. The accompanying zucchini flower was done beautifully - light and crispy.

The next dish was Twice-Cooked Duck, Sweet Potato Puree and Lime. I really enjoyed the combination of the well-done duck and the velvety sweet potato puree. The lime added a little zing after-taste, which I thought was rather interesting.

The night finished with two types of dessert - Formaggio - with pear, dried fruits, quince paste, crackers and Caramel Pannacotta, wild fig cake, macadamia ice-cream.

I particularly enjoyed the pannacotta - the flavours were balanced really well and I cleaned up the glass in seconds. From someone that is not a huge fan of figs, that is saying a lot about this dessert!

The relaunched Cecconi reinforces that it will always do what it does best -- fine Italian food with a touch of class.

* Special thanks to Tim O'Connor for the great photos

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