The first lunch for 2017 was a treat of Taiwanese food from the popular Pyrmont restaurant, Blue Eye Dragon. The Sydney Ladies Wine and Food Society had been to this restaurant six years ago and there was interest to see how the cuisine had changed over that time.
The aperitif was a 2015 Sandalford Estate Rose and served in the attractive bamboo garden courtyard of the restaurant.
This rose was a darker, deep colour than anticipated and the berry fruit taste was not too sweet which resulted in favourable comments.
To enjoy a cross-section of the restaurant’s menu, the 31 ladies were given four entrees and four mains :
Lavender Tea Smoked Chicken
Steamed Pork Dumplings
Spicy Shin Beef Salad with Taiwanese vinaigrette
Salt and Pepper Prawns
Whilst the Lavender Tea Smoked Chicken was tender, the lavender infusion was not evident. One of the ladies had the dish a week earlier and said the Lavender smoke was more evident then. Could be because we were a large group which can restrain some elements in food.
The steamed Pork Dumplings were the dish of the day with many 10’s on the rating forms. The coarse texture of the pork and the blend of the herbs and spices made for a great dumpling.
The spicy shin beef was a weaker dish as the meat was over cooked and could have been rarer. The sauce could have done with the addition of a sour element.
The salt and pepper prawns were obviously very fresh prawns and cooked in a light batter. Also rated highly.
Beef fillet in black pepper sauce
Prawns and Vegetables in XO sauce
Steamed snapper fillet in fish sauce
Chicken & vegetables in garlic chilli sauce
The beef fillet was a taste of spice, pepper and vinegar sharp and rated fairly well.
The aroma of the Prawns and vegetables in XO sauce was outstanding. This was also a good dish as the XO sauce was well put together.
The steamed snapper was a light dish and some commented a little sweet.
The feeling on the Chicken and vegetables in garlic chilli sauce was that there was too much chilli in the dish.
The accompanying wines were :
2016 Madfish Riesling
2015 Little Wine Company Hunter Valley Verdelho – this wine was presented masked and we had a guessing game. The winner took home a bag of the wonderful frozen Pork Dumplings.
2014 Phillip Shaw ‘The Conductor’ Merlot
The wines matched perfectly with the food. The crispness of the white wines went well with the Asian food.
There was plenty of interaction and discussion of the food and wine.
The atmosphere in the restaurant was cool and calm as we had an area to ourselves, but as usual, acoustics were not good when speaking to the attendees.
Overall, the meal was enjoyed by the ladies.