Friday, June 27, 2014

Devon Cafe, Surry Hills (June 2014)

So here we are back at Devon Cafe, eating our way through their delicious winter menu. I love how Devon changes up their menu every season, bringing back some old favourites as well as serving up their new creations. (Also, winter = the Australian truffle season! Another reason to get excited hehe)

Our favourite spot in the cafe is in the court yard, but today we were seated at a communal table towards the back, in front of a garage door. Nevermind about the cold draft coming in through the door, as food photographers, our primary concern was that it affected the lighting of the photos :P Talk about #firstworldproblems. On the upside though, it was a relatively private corner, and you don't get people walking past you all the time. And a bit of fresh air doesn't hurt :)

Now without further ado, let's talk about the food! First up, we have Breakfast with the Sakuma's.


So happy that they brought this dish back, since I've been meaning to try it since last year. As the use of the Japanese name (Sakuma) might suggest, there's some Japanese influence on this dish, as the salmon is a miso grilled king salmon, served with a sprinkle of furikake (a seasoning consisting of things like dried seaweed, sesame, dried fish flakes). Honestly I didn't taste any miso-ness in the salmon, but I still enjoyed it as the salmon was moist and cooked very well, and it was very easy to flake it into bite-size chunks. The smoked eel croquette was a bit disappointing since I couldn't really taste the eel either - I felt there was too much rice and not enough eel. The crumbed batter was nice though, and the 63-degree egg was beautiful - so soft and runny. The dish was served with dollops of Kewpie mayonnaise and a small serving of radish and spinach salad, which was simple and refreshing.

The menu described this dish as baked eggs, piperade, pistou and sourdough toast, with the option of adding blood sausage for $5. Overall, the taste was not bad. The rich flavours of tomato and roast capsicum of the piperade dominated the dish, with subtle hints of garlic and basil from the pistou (the green swirls). However, we felt the dish needed a bit more texture, as everything was just soft and saucy. We also wanted a bit more bread, because when you finish the bread it felt a bit weird to eat the sauce just by itself.

Coffee was good, and the iced mocha was awesome - ice-cream and chocolate sauce make everything more fabulous :P


A few Fridays later, we came back again for more food :)

CHIPS PIMPED WITH TRUFFLES ($7 for chips, $9 extra for truffles)
The truffles are back, and we could not pass up the opportunity to pimp our fries. The flavour of truffles definitely enhanced the taste of the chips, as did the mayo dipping sauce.

This sandwich contained egg, king salmon, mayonnaise, cos lettuce and cornichons. It was quite a simple sandwich with the protein elements mixed well with the mayonnaise, then a few leaves of lettuce and pieces of cornichons (pickled cucumbers) added to it. Simple and satisfying. 

EGGS BLINI ($19.00)
Eggs blini!!! Possibly my favourite dish from their winter menu. So basically there's a buckwheat blini (a type of pancake) topped with generous amounts of cured king salmon, two perfectly poached eggs, salmon caviar, broccolini and drizzled in sauce Mikado. The blini was light and fluffy while the cured salmon was tender and smooth with a lightly salted flavour. The salmon caviar was fun to burst in the mouth and with a much more prominent briny flavour. Lovely poached eggs, the yolk was so nice and runny, and the Mikado sauce was creamy with a hint of tanginess. (Fun fact: Mikado sauce is hollandaise sauce with tangerine juice and zest). Broccolini was a great garnish, giving the dish some fresh green colour and another dimension to the texture. This dish was actually very filling, perhaps due to the buckwheat blini, which is high in fibre. 
And needless to say, the presentation is fabulous (and is a favourite amongst instagramers lol).

This dish consisted of Spanish blood sausage, chestnut, celeriac gratin, apple puree and fried egg. Plenty of protein in this dish, and in particular the blood sausage was rich and seasoned very nicely. Not too sure how the other elements of the dish tasted, but the eater had no complaints and finished off everything, so they must have been pleased with the food. 

Overall, another very positive experience at Devon Cafe. Cannot wait to try out their new dinner menus... Devon By Night!! 

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