Wagyu bresaola, quail egg, purple cauliflower and hay ash

Cooking with Soul : Saint Crispin

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Contemporary Australian Cuisine, Melbourne's Inner City

Let me start by stealing a line from the movie, Zoolander – “Smith Street, so hot right now”.  Sizzling with hotness x10 – thanks to the many new eateries that has opened its doors this winter on Smith Street and one of them is Saint Crispin. A partnership between talented chefs, Scott Picket (ex-The Point, current one-hatted Estelle) and Joe Grbac (ex-The Press Club), you can imagine the kind of soulful Modern Australian that can be experienced through a degustation style menu.

Saint CrispinSaint Crispin

I had waited for 3 weeks to get my reservation through.  We went for the 6pm early seating and easily half hour later, the dining room was full.  The service was friendly and oldies rock was pumping in the room.  Looking around, diners were enjoying themselves and the vibe was casually relax and lively.

After we’re seated, we were each given starter snacks – Hibiscus marsmallow and Black olive macaron which is d-vine and bread slices with house-made caramelised onion cream cheese.  Love that little touch which differentiates them from other eateries I’ve been … and talk about that cream cheese, I would love to get my hands on the recipe :)

Saint CrispinHibiscus Marshmallow & Black Olive Macaron (complimentary) 

We went for 3-course degustation at $60 p.p – A little up market-ish price wise.  The choices were simple but I had a very difficult choice to make because everything look so good.  So, finally, for entree, we went for Yellow fin with ham hock consomme and beautiful tasting Wagyu bresaola.

Hubby’s Yellow Fin entree was very comforting and heartwarming with the rich warm broth that accompanies the nicely seared Yellow Fin.  As for my Wagyu – I cleaned my plate – yes! it was THAT good!

Yellowfin tuna, ham hock, chrysanthemum, maple and horseradishYellowfin tuna, ham hock, chrysanthemum, maple and horseradish

Wagyu bresaola, quail egg, purple cauliflower and hay ashWagyu bresaola, quail egg, purple cauliflower and hay ash

Having had stunning entrees, my expectations for mains went up a good few notches.  Hubby had Flinders Island Lamb which was pink and tender.  It was garnished with air-filled pillows of crisp potato, small turnips and nettle puree.  My hubby’s facial expression told me that the first bite of the lamb was a melting moment.   On the other hand, Veal cheek was to die for.  The meat easily broke into pieces and melt in mouth.  Well balanced flavour with miso.

Flinders Island lamb, nettles, radish tops and turnipFlinders Island lamb, nettles, radish tops and turnip

Veal cheek, hand rolled macaroni and misoVeal cheek, hand rolled macaroni and miso

We shared two desserts.  What I love about the Blood Orange dessert is the cold frozen texture inside the parfait that got me chomping away.  The flavours were absolutely delightful with the right play of sweet tangy and bitterness. The second dessert we shared was the Chocolate and earl grey which I love particularly the soft texture of the chocolate mousse.  Yummy :)

Blood orange parfait, white lemon, yoghurt and mandarinBlood orange parfait, white lemon, yoghurt and mandarin

Chocolate, earl grey, milk and gingerChocolate, earl grey, milk and ginger

Petit FourPetit Four

Verdict : Exceptional quality.  Beautiful presentation.  Unforgettable service.  Delicious food.  Four big ticks.  One setback was despite the twice high ceiling, the noise level in the restaurant started to be ear ringing when the place gets pack.  Nevertheless, that didn’t disturb us as we were close to finishing our meal :)

Burp! Checklist
To die for : Veal cheek, hand rolled macaroni and miso
Price : $$$
Yummy Factor : +4
Noise Level : Moderate
Tip : Avoid walk in during weekend dinner, must make reservation

[Saint Crispin]
300 Smith Street, Collingwood, Victoria
P: 03 9419 2202
Wed-Thus: Dinner & Late
Fri-Sun: Lunch, Dinner & Late

You may also like : Brooks of Melbourne, Taxi Dining Room, Bluestone, Hare & Grace, Estelle Bar & Kitchen

Saint Crispin on Urbanspoon

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