Sandhurst Club – Bendigo
14 View st
I was kindly invited by my supervising GP to attend a drug-rep. dinner at Sandhurst Club (I’ve heard it was quite an exclusive club in Bendigo – not so long ago there was a debate over allowing female memberships.)
Locating the double-story brick mansion overlooking Rosalind Park without any guidance proved to be a slight challenge. It was located rather ambiguously off the main road, which was only accessible via a small unremarkable laneway and no obvious directing signs either – all the more exclusive!
I was obviously excited when I saw several bottles of local reds sitting at the centre of each table. Not wine expert, especially Bendigo wines, I didn’t really have much preference between the
Burnt Acre 2008 Shiraz & Turner’s Crossing 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon – and unwittingly went with the former. Later I was strongly urged to try the latter by other Doctors on the table (very knowledgeable food-wine connoisseurs). I thoroughly enjoyed the Cab Sauv, probably a glass… or 4 too many over the duration of the night. =)
The Club’s Four Tastes
Taste #1 Pan fried prawns served with creamy rosemary sauce – flesh had a juicy bite with a fresh aroma of the sea. Yum!
Taste #2 Pumpkin soup – deep orange soup speckled with herbs (gah, drank it too fast to notice which herbs they used, vaguely remember by taste probably thyme) in a petite white tea cup. It was thick, creamy and flavoursome.
Taste #3 Beef on skewer drizzled with rosemary & olive oil – was a tad over grilled giving a slightly dry texture to the meat.
Taste #4 Potato with white horseradish relish – a mouthful of the horseradish certainly gave a strong kick of wasabi through the sinuses – definitely a bold statement!
Lamb Backstrap with roasted pepper sauce, grilled Vegetable Stack & Rosti potato.
The lamb was a lean cut, cooked nicely to a peeking-pink showing through the sliced straps. It was tender & juicy; the blunt knife incised easily through it. The grilled slices of juicy cucumber & rich suppleness from the eggplant complemented the lean lamb perfectly. Just one small issue: the base layer of Rosti potato was overly peppery and unfortunately not crisp nor crumbly (probably just my personal preference for Rosti). Overall a well balanced main.
Side note: I wonder sometimes why places serve dishes with a whole sprig of herb (rosemary / thyme) or what not, especially if it in no way adds flavour to the dish (clearly not a big issue given some of us got rosemary, some thyme). Although likely a little visual kick, but ‘sigh’ what a waste…
Dessert: Orange, Almond and Pistachio Cake, served with cream, strawberry jam & orange marmalade
It was a warm toasty cake with a moist buttery texture. It had hints of orange and almond with crunchy bites of pistachio. I found the strawberry jam smear clashed with the overall citrus elements of the dessert, but was well complemented by the cream and bitter-sweet orange marmalade.
P.S. Apologies to most if not all of you who are not current members of the Sandhurst Club, as I would highly recommend dining here! Maybe try bribe a membership, haha. Alas could not take photos, given it was a “professional” event… would have received glares from the senior doctors.
Food rating: 17/20 delightful food.