8 Whiteman Street, Crown Metropol Level 1, Southbank Vic 3006
Phone: (03) 9292 8300
Service: 8/10 (attentive and superb)
UPDATE: Gordon Ramsay has put Maze and Maze Grill into liquidation. T_T
Ever want to try Michelin standard restaurants? Gordon Ramsay launched his Maze family at Crown in Melbourne over a year ago. I heard mixed reviews with regards to this place and have been wanting to check it out myself. Thus, I made a reservation a week earlier to secure our seats. The waitress even called me the day before to confirm my reservation.
J and I arrived around 7.30pm and we were shown to our seats promptly. The waitress offered to put our coats away and we were given the menus thereafter. We started with a glass of red wine each while the waiter went through some of the highlights in the menu. He was knowledgeable and courteous. After placing our orders, we were served with the signature bread with seaweed and salt butter. The bread was fluffy and soft; the butter was a tad too salty on the first bite but it actually triggered your taste buds thereafter. NOM!
First up, we had Roasted bay scallops with braised veal tail, parsnip and coral crisp. The scallops were large and fresh, cooked till golden brown on both sides and drizzled with a fabulous sauce. Braised veal tail was tender. Presentation was just a piece of art!Next, we had Foie gras and chicken liver parfait with Madeira, mulberries and toasted sourdough. I spread the foie gras onto the sourdough and the first mouth was just perfect! It was smooth and tenderized the toasted bread easily. Madeira sweetened the dish while the mulberries gave a fruity zesty twist to this classic french dish which J agreed too!
We also had Slow cooked octopus with chorizo, grilled capsicum and wood sorrel. The octopus was not overcooked nor too chewy. The disappointing part of this dish was the chorizo, it was too burnt and the saltiness overpowered the light, succulent octopus. The grilled capsicum was sweet when dipped with the sauce and the wood sorrel were so adorable and added delight to our visual.
Now to the mains, J had Macleay Valley rabbit with local mushrooms and sweet onion puree. The presentation of this dish looked more like a tasting plate of the various parts of a rabbit. The meat tasted superb on its own with no sauce nor marinating (I was actually quite hesitant to try any initially but the waiter reassured that it is good and J agreed upon tasting!). It looked a bit like chicken but the texture of the meat was more muscular and it had a light natural fragrant to it. J mentioned that the pie is awesome with the mushrooms and the gravy to be drizzled on the plate simply increased his enjoyment.
I had Cape Grim short rib with potato, shimeji mushrooms and shallot gastric upon the recommendation of the waiter. The beef was so tender and soft (it melted right in my mouth!); the mashed potato was fantastic, if only I was able to have more. On top of that, the marinade was so special, I have not tasted anything like it before. It finished up the dish just the way I love!
We finished the night off with Tomme du vieux Saulnois quince on toast: hard cow milk cheese from France. I did not enjoy it very much but J was happy with his selection. 😦 We also had Hot chocolate fondant with pumpkin and gingerbread ice cream. As J did not want to get a birthday cake when he celebrated his birthday at Takumi, I decided to get the waiter to do me a favour and write him a message on the plate as his belated birthday cake. 😀 I am not very adventurous when it comes to ice cream flavours due to some rather ‘disturbing’ experiences in the past. So I usually stick with the safe flavours. Gingerbread ice cream, I was wondering how it will taste like, but I took a “leap of faith” and dug into it. It was rather interesting but still nice. The waiter popped by just as we were digging into the fondant and suggested to us to have the chocolate together with the pumpkin and ice cream. It was simply heaven! The chocolate oozed out the moment we broke into it. YUMMY!
By this time, J and I were both so full, almost bursting and we were preparing to leave for the night. One of the waitresses then walked up to our table and presented us with the Chocolate Truffles with Caramel. They were delicious I must admit! 🙂
Gordon Ramsay’s restaurant indeed lives up to it s reputation and excellent quality. The ambience was great, the service was dedicated. The waiter who was serving us for the night recommended several of the dishes we had and they were fabulous! Kudos to him! I will definitely return for more and perhaps also Maze Grill for their great selection of steaks! On a side note, J left his camera cover in his pocket and somehow it slipped out when his coat was returned. One of the waitresses actually called me twice on my cellphone to get us to go back and retrieve it. It is heartening to know that they care about their diners and are observant about their needs. 😛 Best service so far I have received in Melbourne! Good Job!