You would have never thought a place like Central Station hides such treasures. The address says Surry Hills but it's found right next to Central Station on Randle Street. Many bloggers have already raved about District Dining and it's special dishes so it's now my turn :)
To continue on with our anniversary celebrations..our final course was dinner at District Dining. I do love my surprises so the Man kept it a secret the entire way. I wasn't expecting to go here at all so when we turned the corner and I saw the modern concrete building with "District Dining", I couldn't help but grin.
The special thing about their menu is that the size of the dishes increase towards the bottom. We got the Crispy Pig Ears with Szechuan salt and Crispy Quail Eggs with Tarragon Mayonnaise as our starters.
I love how they give it on wooden boards. Not only is their menu different and quirky, their presentation is also artistic.
The quail eggs.
Within the crusty coating is the delicate quail egg, moist and soft. The eggs are soft boiled so they easily cut with a knife. They're so tiny and cute that you feel like more after each bite. The tarragon mayonnaise is tangy and smooth. There are green specks of tarragon visible in the mayo and that made the dish look even prettier.
This is what happens if you're clumsy :p
The crispy pig ears. I didn't know pig ears could taste this good! I've always had a slight phobia for meat from other places than the trunk. I've only recently tried fried pig skins as well. Well this one is a must if you dine here. Chewy and salty, this makes a healthy and delicious snack! One pig ear quickly leads to the other and soon, we were finished with this and wishing for more.
For the main, we ordered Cone Bay Barramundi with Saffron Potatoes, Boullabaise and Rouille, and the Roasted Spatchcock, Kumara Chips, Bois Boudrin, and Aioli.
The barramundi. The saffron potato puree was so creamy and soft. It wasn't the fish that captivated my palate but the rouille. The seafood soup, or the boullabaise, soaks through the potatoe rouille, adding a deeper stew-like flavour to the whole dish.
The spatchcock was tender and was well spiced, a bit like in a Moroccan style. The kumara chips were sweet and crispy and I definitely could have had more than 3 little sticks. The bois boudrin is the green pesto-like paste on the bottom. It was very zesty and had a more dip-like consistency with a bit of olive oil. I couldn't quite tell what it was made from, shallots? Parsley? but it certainly refreshed my mouth after all the mayo and oil.
The Cookie Sandwich! I think the cookies are chocolate chip and coconut. They were soft and just the right amount of sweetness. Instead, the creamy honeycomb filling really hits the sweet meter. It's overly sweet but still delicious. The caramel sheet on the bottom and the honeycomb crumbs only intensify the sugar hit. It was one of those foods that are good, but it's either too spicy or sweet or sour or bitter so you have to persevere to finish it.
I still liked it :)
The brulee was well made, crunchy caramelised sugar on top, creamy on the inside. One thing I didn't like about it was that the cream was too warm. A tropical fruit dessert such as this one would have been better cold.
The madeleines were lemony and soft. Not as buttery as what you would find at other places but with all the overwhelming sweetness, we needed something fruity to cleanse our palate.
So far, all of our recent gastronomic adventures have been a success and this one by far is a winner! District Dining did not disappoint me and even though the location doesn't seem ideal, the mood inside is classy and modern. They also have a cocktail menu on the blackboard behind the bar so be sure to check that out. My stomach is happy :)