Friday, 26 July 2013

Food Society, Darlinghurst

The first time I heard about Food Society was over a year ago when a friend posted photos of a bunch of their sharing plates on Facebook and made me green with envy. At the time I vowed to myself that I would pay a visit, but never quite got around to doing so. Then, earlier this year, I spotted one of its Groupon deals and impulse-purchased the voucher - "High Tea with Sparkling Wine Each for Two ($49)". Once again, a significant amount of time lapsed before making a reservation to make use of them.

Paranoid as I am, I skimmed through some reviews beforehand to mentally prepare myself for anything negative that could potentially have spoilt the afternoon. Gladly, none of the negative items mentioned happened to me, and my overall experience was pleasant! We were running half an hour late due to unexpected traffic on the way to the Bridge. I called ahead and spoke to a waitress who cordially made a note of it. When we arrived, we were settled in, provided with our sparkling wine, and served our courses at a steady pace.
It gets dark in there ><

Food Society's high tea is not the traditional sort that comes with tea, sandwiches, scones, jam and cream - though they did serve the first round on a two-tiered plate stand! Instead, its menu is separated into different "canape" categories - savoury, substantial and sweet.

The first savoury canape I tried was a demitasse (small coffee cup) of soup. It was some sort of onion soup with a little sprinkle of parsley on top. It was nice to have something warm to kick off the meal.


Second was a celeriac custard tartlet with root vegetable salsa. The pastry, filling and garnishing were all light - the epitome of a canape.

Custard tartlet

On the bottom plate lay croquettes and crostinis for two. The croquette consisted of sun dried tomato, provolone cheese, parsley and thyme with horseradish cream. What struck me was how little resistance there was when I bit into it - I wasn't too fond of how the filling oozed out.

The crostini was quite adventurous. It contained trout tartare, capers and watercress, which in itself  wasn't strange, but the external skin of the crostini could be likened to a thin layer of omelette. It made me wonder what their definition of a crostini is...

Croquette and crostini

The next part of the high tea was made up of a mini burger and salad. The burger was a little milk roll that sandwiched some pulled poached chicken, paprika aioli, dutch smoked cheese and baked apple. The slices of apple tied the roll nicely to the salad, which was fruity and sweet (containing walnuts, grapes, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes and a light drizzle of beetroot and mint dressing).

Milk roll with chicken

The final round was very rich, though presented beautifully on a wooden board. I opted to start off with the lightest looking dessert item - the lemon curd and French meringue tart. The meringue was soft, though lightly torched, while the lemon curd was zesty but still quite sweet - and a little runny.

Lemon curd tart

Second was the fudge brownie sitting in some walnut butterscotch. While the butterscotch was a nice touch and added a little moisture to the brownie, it was still quite dry and biscuit-like.


Last to be attacked were the ricotta doughnuts. These were dipped in lemon sugar and amaretto honey. Though I wasn't very full by this time, one of these little guys was enough to bring me to satiation. These little balls of doughnut tasted like crunchy, sugary pancake. Definitely comfort food.

Ricotta doughnuts

What's high tea without tea to drink? Clearly Food Society doesn't boast tradition, but I wanted something to cleanse my palate. I ordered green tea and was provided a monster of a pot. I think it was actually larger than my head. Enjoyed it - though not so much the indigestion that followed because I was too greedy and drank the rest in one go at the end.

Not sure how I managed to get the below photo so bright... I might have forgotten to play around with the ISO until too late. Whoops.

Pot of green tea ($3.00)

For $49 for two, I don't think it was a bad deal. Would I be willing to pay full price for it? Probably not...

Food Society on Urbanspoon

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