After reading some great reviews and looking over the RockSalt menu, I decided that this would be one of the restaurants up for review while we were on the Gold Coast. In my website perusal, I noted RockSalt were offering a seven-course Degustation Menu and also a Tapas menu in addition to the regular lunch and dinner options.
It all looked rather interesting and the food choices were particularly appealing so I made and online reservation and continued to flick through the lovely gallery food images on the website.
When we arrived I was pleasantly surprised. The atmosphere was exactly as stated in my reading, casual and modern. Given the restaurant’s reputation and the “hat rating” I was expecting it to be at least a little pretentious, I was wrong. It is lovely and relaxed with a casual sophistication.
Once seated, the waiter explained the menu and specials. Mr GG had been considering sampling the seven-course degustation menu but there were so many tempting options that it was obviously not going to be that simple. We spent some time looking over the menu and eventually ordered with a little help from our waiter.
The entrees arrived and although we were expecting beautiful presentation and a lovely dish we found ourselves in absolute food heaven. The dish we sampled first was the King Prawn Risotto with White Truffle Oil, Black Truffle Risotto and Caviar, and it was simply amazing. The Risotto had the perfect salty, creamy, seafood flavour, with little caviar explosions, the prawn was perfectly cooked and generously portioned. It was a dish hubby didn’t want to ever finish. I could have easily had “order envy” except that my entrée was just as good.
On the waiter’s recommendation I had ordered the Grilled & Confit Quail, Foie Gras Cigar, Pressed Pineapple, Hazelnuts, Baby Leaves, Sherry Vinaigrette. This was a beautiful crispy skinned quail with lovely delicate flavours, perfectly matched to the crisp cigar and creamy Foie Gras.
At this point in the meal, I was very impressed. The entrees had been perfect, the waiter attentive, and the atmosphere fantastic. It is the little things which make a dining experience something special.
The main courses arrived and the presentation was exactly as you would expect from a restaurant of this calibre. With the feeling of winter in the air, I had ordered the Herb & Nut Crusted Eye Fillet, Fondant Potato, Roast Shallot & Carrot Puree with Red Wine Jus. It is a fairly standard on restaurant menus but isn’t often done well, in my opinion.
I had requested the Eye Fillet to be cooked rare and it was cooked to perfection, lovely, moist and flavoursome. I tend to hold my breath when I cut into my steak these days, as it is so disappointing a number of times I’m served overcooked meat. The fondant roast potato was creamy, the jus sticky and the pureed carrot completed the presentation.
I sampled Mr GG’s Assiette of Lamb – Shoulder, Loin & Cutlet, Potato Puree, Smoked Eggplant, Ruby Chard, Peas, and Jus. The lamb was a “melt in your mouth” experience, matched perfectly with the eggplant and potato puree. It was another amazing meal, ideal for the Winter menu.
I am truly impressed with this restaurant, all the dishes have been amazing. Looking around there is a good mix of people enjoying the restaurant. The atmosphere is casual enough to have attracted a few larger groups of friends but it is still lovely and intimate which is evident by the number of couples enjoying a romantic evening together.
I don’t usually manage a three-course meal but despite feeling a little full I am really looking forward to dessert. The dessert choices all looked fantastic and after the beautiful presentation of the proceeding courses, I am excitedly looking forward to the Dark Chocolate & Date Pudding, Pistachio Cream, Chocolate Crumbs, and Cardamom Ice Cream.
Dessert is served and I wonder how many times I can use the same adjectives, luscious, amazing, heavenly. My dessert was all of this and more, the Pistachio cream was amazingly sweet, sticky and silky, it looked amazing on the plate with the matching fairy floss. The Cardamom Ice cream was lovely and light and the flavour a refreshing blend of complimentary spices which suited the chocolate and date cake perfectly. It was another dish which looked amazing on the plate and was perfect on the palate.
My lovely husband chose to have a dessert which included both white and milk chocolate. The dessert was the White Chocolate & Cherry Terrine, Salted Peanut Caramel, Milk Chocolate Mousse, and Waffle Tuile. It was an absolute taste sensation. The mousse was light and creamy the terrain had a lush Cherry Jelly layer which was just divine. It looked spectacular and tasted every bit as good.
The complexity of each dish, the degree of difficulty and the luscious taste means that this is a restaurant to come back to again and again. There is nothing on the menu to attempt at home, these dishes are not for mere mortals but for chefs alone to create. The King Prawn Risotto is the single best dish I have ever had the pleasure of eating and the Cardamom Ice cream was another clear winner in my opinion.
It is very easy to see why this restaurant holds a hat rating. The service, the food, the presentation and the atmosphere is absolutely impeccable.
The restaurant also caters for children with a “Little Tykes” menu.
Oh, and the three-course meal was only $55.