Melbourne: Attica [2017.01.11]

With my partner fattie T. in town, we *had* to go to Attica. I locked the reso down for our feast early in May 2016 with a hefty deposit, and we waited. And waited. For EIGHT fackin’ months. Oh, the things we do to sedate our inner fat kids.

Attica is currently No. 32 on The World’s Best 50 list.

At the helm of owner and Executive Chef, Ben Shewry, Attica presents beautifully balanced, modern cuisine in a relaxed dining environment. His philosophy for food is that it can, and should, be evocative, emotional and thought provoking. Much of his menu is drawn from his environment; of volcanos, rivers, oceans, and native bush.

“Emotion and experience underpin a uniquely Australian adventure.”

Much of Shewry’s menu references Aussie culture and history. See if you can pick them up 😉.

Again, I’m, by no means, a for realsies food blogger. I don’t go prepared with pen and notepad in sight, ready to jot down every thought. So, my I’M NOT A FOOD BLOGGER DISCLAIMER: if that’s what you’re looking for, I’m not it. If you’re looking for some pretty amazing decent pictures and memories from a human with a goldfish brain, than I’m your gal.

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The menu changes with the season (?) but I think there are some signature dishes (the egg) that stays. We splurged on the wine even though I know I shouldn’t have (re: all my leftover booze at Narisawa)…but…what’s the fun in that? And, well, T. had had some pretty awful wine experiences in Australia, and we figured, if we were going to have good Aussie wine, it would be here. And it was much cheaper than the international wine. #treatyoself, but don’t be insensible.

So, we arrived at 7.30p and tucked in for the No. 32 World’s Best restaurant:

T H E M E N U

Cook’s Leaves | Aged Santa Claus Melon | Goolwa Pippies |Smashed Avo on Toast
In Dreams Chardonnay 2014 – Yarra Valley Victoria

4 different types of leaves from the backyard garden were plucked and served with a caramelised apple and sour cream dip.
A sweet and sour Santa Claus melon (aka Christmas melon aka something I’ve never heard of before) dusted with a goji and sour plum powder.
Goola Pippies in seaweed butter.
And, of course, your quintessential Aussie dish of avo toast (avocado, finger lime, first-sprout mint leaves).

Smoked Pork | An Imperfect History of Ripponlea | Gazza’s Vegemite Pie | Chewy Carrots | Lance Wiffen’s Mussel | Beef on the Bone | Aromatic Ripponlea Broth
Pyramid Valley x Attica Smoke and Mirrors 2014 – Canterbury, New Zealand

Pork neck from an “older pig” (whatever that means lol) hot smoked for nine hours in apple cider sauce.
A tribute to Australia in tarts: red native indigenous pepper berry, Quandong, to represent the aboriginal history, blood pudding for the Brits, and dill Schwartz chicken jelly for the Jewish history.
Vegemite pie wrapped around lamb topped with local cheese.
Chewy carrots slow cooked and smoked for 12 hours with tarragon leaves (we thought it tasted like pepperoni sticks).
Mussels from Portarlington paired with edible sea succulents.

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetSirloin poached in macadamia nut, skewered on a cow shin bone. Using the bone as a fork #savage.

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetLeaves, buds, and flowers in chicken broth.

Wattleseed Bread

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetMacadamia nut with oil and saltbush leaves. Sourdough Rye. Hand-churned butter.

Salted Red Kangaroo and Bunya Bunya
Bannockburn Shiraz 1999 – Geelong, Victoria

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetSalted kanga and Bunya Bunya served with purple carrots. Look at dat colour.

All Parts of the Pumpkin
Pennyweight Woody’s Amontillado – Beechworth, Victoria

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetPumpkin flesh. Sweet and sour pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin cream.
All. The. Pumpkin.
I. Love. Pumplin.

Marron, Quandong and Pearl
Tellurian Riesling 2016 – Heathcote, Victoria

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetMarron, the Australian lobster, in butter.

Jumbuck, Waxflower Oil and Desert Oak
Milton Te Arai Vineyard Chenin Blanc 2015 – Gisborne, New Zealand

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetBraised lamb shoulder in mint jus. Not the most photogenic of the bunch.

Cuppa Tea and Mint Slice in the Garden

Intermission to the garden, special tour guide from Calgary 😂.

Pineapple and Anise Myrtle
A Tonic of Australian Botanicals

Pineapple juice, finger lime, granny smith apple, myrtle leave, lemon aspen leave curd, and candied buckwheat.
Gin, licorice root, hibiscus cocktail.

Whipped Egg with Sugar Bag
Ngeringa Altus 2011 – Adelaide Hills, South Australia

2017-01-12 11.07.04 1.jpgThe infamous emu egg: Daintree dark chocolate ice cream whipped with emu egg sabayon.

Attica Cheftales

A take on the classic Aussie lolly: Fantales. Daintree milk chocolate. lemon myrtle, salted caramel wrapped in wrapped in who-am-I trivia questions. We got Roy Choi, Christina Tosi, and Rene Redzepi.

For refs:

  • Menu Collection: $275
  • Australian Wine Pairing: $150 (?) Maybe it was $185, can’t remember. The International Wine Pairing was an outrageous $250 I believe.
  • Was it worth it: Yes
  • Would I go back: Probs not. Unless someone fancy wants to take me. Or if someone wanted to go but did all the procuring of the resos.

Tho, I’d most defs rather go back to Narisawa.

Also, side note, the boozy pairing was, once again, wasted on me. I still long for the day where I can ask to have the option to pay half the amount and they just pour me half as much.

Total star count: still 8, cos there ain’t no stars in Oz
World’s Best 50 count: 2!

ATTICA
Address: 74 Glen Eira Road, Ripponlea, VIC 3185
Telephone: +61(3)95300111
Hours: Tues – Sat 6:oop – 8:oop| Sun + Mon CLOSED

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One thought on “Melbourne: Attica [2017.01.11]

  1. Pingback: 2 year anniversary… – occasional insomniac

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