8 Whiteman St, Southbank, Melbourne VIC 3006
Cuisine: Modern Australian
at Southbank, is a string of enticing restaurants – but Number 8 has been on my ‘To-Eat-List’ for quite some time now. Yarra River
I came here with some workmates on a Thursday night and was seated at the bar to choose drinks, as we arrived early. It was a nice touch to see the drinks menu operated on an iPad that offered a wide range of alcoholic beverages. The prices ranged from $10 up to a $13,200 bottle of French wine aged from 1907. Unfortunately, I don’t have that kind of disposable income.
We then settled into our booked table, and were served some bread for the table while we wait for our food. The decor is modern and elegant at the same time with touches of random art on the walls.
The first entrée dish that arrived was served to my workmate, who had the calamari with grapefruit, red elk and roasted garlic aioli (LEFT). I had a little nibble of this, and although I’m not a big fan of calamari, this was the most tender and juiciest calamari! Perfectly soft and oozing with juices.
The entree (RIGHT) was the Wagyu carpaccio, with confit heirloom tomato and red onion chips. Again, I only tried a nibble of this, but it was paper thin! It didn’t really taste like meat, but rather just melted in my mouth. It was an explosion to my tastebuds, and as my workmate put it, “devastatingly good”.
Next up, was the mains.
Below was the Pan-fried
barramundi with roasted shallot consommé, Freeka and local yabbie risotto. I didn’t try this one, but I thought the presentation was nice. Cone Bay
Then my main – I had the Milawa organic chicken breast with sautéed Victorian mushrooms, confit leg pithivier. The main came out in a smaller portion than I expected, but the chicken was juicy, and the range of different textures on this one plate was quite surprising. The sauce tasted more like a fusion of soysauce mixed into an Australian form, which was really pleasant, but overall, I didn’t find the chicken all too special (maybe because it’s just chicken?). Toghether with the portion on the small end of the scale, I’m not sure if the price value met the expectation I had for this dish. Other than this individual criticism, the flavours, textures and artistic presentation of this dish were perfect.
For sides we had hand cut Russet Burbank Chips and Rocket salad, both of which served as good sides.
Finally – dessert.
I had the crème brulee, white chocolate ice cream, brandy gelee, honey comb, wafer, lemon balm.
Yes, this was both mouth-watering and eye-watering.
I was really surprised that the crème brulee tasted even better than it looked! I think I may have been holding back tears. The shell on the outside of the crème brulee was thin, delicate, crispy and cracked easily with a spoon, the inside spilling with the softest and creamiest custard. Delicious!
Now onto the ice cream – The menu described this as ‘white chocolate ice cream’ but as seen in the photos this was actually purple in colour, and didn’t taste like chocolate at all. It tasted like… lavender flowers! Perhaps, I was given the wrong ice cream, but I didn’t care, it was amazing!
Overall, the chefs at Number 8 cook a clean and fresh menu – with textures that complement each other flawlessly. I would recommend trying Number 8 and most definitely will come back again for the crème brulee!