Marquee Restaurant Bar – Top Melbourne Party
445 Toorak Rd
03 9827 7938
A few of weeks back I was very delighted to be invited along to a Top Melbourne Party to celebrate the newly opened Marquee at Trak Centre. Given we were allowed to bring a +1, I decided I’d bring mum along as part of a small treat for her birthday.
Clockwise from top left: the bar (soon to be crowded by the masses); Thanh & mum posing; Marquee menu under candlelight; draping tent overhead; entree menu to be served tonight.
There is a sense of swooping opulence offered by the overhead tent structure with white drapes thrown against black iron details. The soft candlelight in the corner spaces are also endlessly warming, whilst the stunning bar is full of alcoholic surprise (*ahem). Arriving on time (actually more like 10 minutes early), I was quickly greeted by the waiting staff, John from Top Melbourne and Belinda from ACE marketing. If I had my business cards ready, the scenario would have been we “exchanged business cards”, but sadly it was just me receiving there’s…
Being early and all, meant that I scored myself one of the few tables remaining in the restaurant (most were removed to accommodate the big numbers of invites expected). Just as well it ended up being the congregation area for a group of fellow food bloggers.
Aviator – seeing every 3rd person carrying one of these, I had to give it a try. It is a misty blend of gin, maraschino liqueur and lemon juice.
Throughout the night I recall having a glass of White, Red, Champagne, Cidar and many glasses of water (staying hydrated ok =P). The names and vineyards of which have escaped me – clearly way too much free quality alcohol for one night. *ahem, not all those glasses are mine…
As the crowds started to fill the space… food also started to get pumped out!!! FINALLY!!! P.S. having sneaked a peak at the restaurant menu, most of the items to follow are taken from the entree and share plates section.
Roasted baby beetroot – Each twirl of toothpicks are small bites of juicy baby beetroot and white anchovy, which offers a little saltines, a little sweet and juice and a little acidity from a splash of balsamic reduction – delish!
Duck liver pate – served with crunchy little slices of crouton and cornichons (gherkin), the smooth pate is packed full of decadent flavour.
King prawns – Battered with beer, these plump king prawns have a crispy shell and great bite to the flesh. They come with a dip of aioli.
I must admit we are by far the most voracious hoard of magpies, swooping down with our swift claws, grabbing whatever edible goodies that were on offer.
Salmon rillette – these moreish rillettes of minced salmon have a nice touch of moistness and seasoning to bring out the cured flavours of the sea. Simple pinch of witlof and chive salad add a green contrast.
Pacific oysters – these petite little pearls of the sea were incredibly fresh, with a crisp alkalinity. The champagne and lime granita adds a subtle but refreshing touch.
Wagyu meatballs – Slow cooked with onion rings, these moist balls of beef were unfortunately a letdown with overly heavy handed seasoning – too salty! This could possibly be the only subpar item of the night.
Lamb ribs – Oven roasted to a sticky golden brown, these ribs of lamb are succulent, sweet and bursting with juice. The best lamb ribs I’ve had in a long time! Around the table we ate on average, 2-3 ribs each – we are such shameless gluts haha!
Apparently there were also mini-burgers around, but we totally missed out on those. Hrmph! Though we certainly ate our fare share of food and wine… =) In fact, half way through the night between about 8 of us we accumulated a huge mound of bones, shells, prawn tails, toothpicks, wine glasses… so much so that we had to naughtily empty it all onto empty plates on a central communal table.
Rating: almost definitely Yummy+1 for the finger food! The space was packed to the brim with hungry people, making for a rowdy night but certainly a very vibrant atmosphere with everyone leaving with a smile on their face.
[Courtesy of Top Melbourne & Marquee Restaurant]