karohemd: Gentoo penguins in Antarctica, by me (Hungry)
Ozzy ([personal profile] karohemd) wrote2012-01-09 03:10 pm

[Fine Dining] Lunch at Alimentum, 08/01/12

A new month means new dishes at Alimentum so I went yesterday to try some of them. I was told a menu had been created for me (things like this happen when you're friends with the chefs on twitter) so I didn't even know in advance what I would get (or choose from a menu) and that it would turn into a 8-course extravaganza.

The canapees came in a funky double bowl:
Canapees: Popcorn and Cheese&Onion Macarons

Alimentum popcorn and Cheese&Onion macarons. Both had an excellent flavour combination of savoury and sweet. I could happily devour a box of those macarons.

The amuse bouche was a small bowl of frothy cauliflower veloute, with little bits of pickled cauli at the bottom.
Amuse Bouche: Cauliflower veloute

This style of soup is one of Alimentum's staples and there's a new flavour every month or so. A nice way to get the tastebuds going.

The next dish was smoked haddock with a fried egg and a fluffy potato veloute.
First starter: Haddock and potato veloute, fried egg

Definitely the first highlight in my menu, the different textures made this. Flaky haddock, frothy soup, rich egg and some crispy bits. Oh, and served by the head chef himself. :)

The first meat dish was a duck terrine (smoked leg and foie gras) with sorbe and fig, and liver parfait on toast.
Second starter: duck terrine, sorbe, fig, liver parfait on toast

The only thing that was a bit off for me here was the "BBQ sauce" that was a bit strong for me but that's a personal preference as I'm not a fan of BBQ sauce. Still, with only a little, it was a great addition.

Back to fish: mackerel with a teriyaki glaze with avocado puree, cucumber and radish.
Fish: mackerel, teryiaki glaze, cucumber, radish

Mackerel is one of my favourite fish, you don't need to much to it, only barely cook it and this is what I got here. The glaze wasn't overpowering and the salad was nicely refreshing. The second highlight.

The main act was a duo of beef. Roasted sirloin with carrots and onion ash and in a separate little copper pot a beef cheek ragu and a generous blob of horseradish mash with more onion ash.
Main: beef, carrot, onion ash

Needless to say, the sirloin was perfectly and evenly cooked, deeply flavoured and soft, perfectly matched by the carrot, the jus and the onion ash adding a bit of zing. The ragu had clearly been cooked for a very long time as the meat was reduced to tiny slithers with jus the right amount of sauce. Deep and rich, I was almost tempted to just dig in with the spoon but didn't in the end. While writing this, I remembered I had a rather similar dish at Pollen St. Social last year and thinking back, I prefer Alimentum's version.

By that time, I was thoroughly stuffed but there were two desserts to come:
Luckily, the pre-dessert was very light: a smooth pernod foam, with bits of pineapple at the bottom and fennel crisps stuck in top (yes, this works, very well).
Pre dessert: Pineapple Foam

The only criticism I could find was that it could be a bit more colourful, especially when served in a white bowl.

The final dessert was a slice of Battenburg cake with apricot icecream on one and a cylinder of amaretto foam on the other side.
Dessert: Battenburg cake, apricot ice cream and foam

The apricot things were light but I couldn't finish the cake after that generously poritioned main before. It was, however, very nice indeed and I'm not a big fan of this sort of cake. The natural light from behind me had faded by that point so this photo didn't come out quite as planned.

So yes, another great meal at Alimentum. The restaurant had a little facelift and a window to the kitchen has been added so you can watch the chefs at work. Immediately behind the window is the cold section where desserts and cold elements of other dishes are assembled but you can also see the stoves further in.

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[personal profile] dancefloorlandmine 2012-01-10 08:54 pm (UTC)(link)
Are you sure that that wasn't a photographing menu rather than a tasting menu? [grin]

Not sure about some of the dishes, but that's probably personal tastes coming in, but the photography is stonking.

[identity profile] gbsteve.livejournal.com 2012-01-09 06:11 pm (UTC)(link)
Battenburg! Wow! It's my favourite.

[identity profile] karohemd.livejournal.com 2012-01-09 06:15 pm (UTC)(link)
They are on a bit of a retro trip. They make a "Black Forest gateau", too but it's one of those deconstructed affairs.

[identity profile] chilledchimp.livejournal.com 2012-01-10 06:15 am (UTC)(link)
I'm not a big meat eater, but the cheese and onion macaroons and the battenburg looked interesting. Not that I'd get a look in on Battenburg if Steve was around! ;0

[identity profile] karohemd.livejournal.com 2012-01-10 09:42 am (UTC)(link)
They also do some excellent vegetarian dishes. Their beetroot/goat's cheese starter is wonderful. The macarons had the texture you expected but tasted different, a little bit bizarre but nice.

[identity profile] vierkilau.livejournal.com 2012-01-11 08:59 am (UTC)(link)
I'll have to try this place sometime

[identity profile] karohemd.livejournal.com 2012-01-11 12:40 pm (UTC)(link)
Yes, you should. It's only a 10 minute walk from the station. Their fixed price lunch/early dinner menu is a bargain, three courses for 22.50, same quality of cooking, just less expensive ingredients. Tell them I sent you and you might get a discount. ;o)