We started our Taste of Melbourne journey with a very creamy "Minted Mermaid" from Albert Street Food & Wine. The chilled soup was thick, decadent and had beautiful flavours.
Albert Street Food & Wine - Duck brik, peach and ginger chutney $12
The Aylesbury - Dorper Lamb Ribs, Pea and Mint $6
One of our favourite dishes was the lamb ribs from The Aylesbury which had big Mediterranean flavours and were delectably juicy and tender, with a perfectly crisp layer of skin.
Movida - Pinchitos Morunos, Chargrilled Moorish Lamb skewers $8
Movida's lamb skewers were perfectly cooked - deliciously charred on the outside and perfectly pink on the inside. They were, as described, incredibly moorish.
Malaysian Kitchen cooking demonstration
The Atlantic - Tempura Soft Shell Crab with jalapeno and ponzu $10
Another highlight of our evening were these beautiful morsels of tempura soft shell crab from The Atlantic. The batter was light and not greasy. The crab tasted fresh and juicy!
Libertine - Smoked venison, beetroot & horseradish $12
The folks behind the Libertine stall were incredibly friendly - it was great to see that their high standard of customer service extended beyond the restaurant!
And the smoked venison did not disappoint. There was a lovely balance of flavours between the salty slices of smoked venison and the slight tartness of the beetroot. The horseradish brought a wasabi-like kick to the dish. It was lovely.
Mr Hive Kitchen & Bar - Salt bush lamb shoulder, peas and mint $8
Mr Hive's lamb shoulder was deliciously tender and tasty.
1 Cocktail + 2 tastes $8
The cocktails from Radii Restaurant & Bar (Park Hyatt) which were accompanied by moreish canapes were most impressive.
Gundowring ice cream $2 for 2 cones
And soon it was time for dessert.
The Botanical - Yuzu cloud, coconut pearl, guava sorbet $6
This was the best dessert we had at Taste of Melbourne. The luxurious coconut milk contrasted spectacularly with the tartness from the guava sorbet and the yuzu brought a lovely chewy textural element to the dish.
Mahjong - Steamed BBQ pork buns $6
Entry tickets courtesy of Nuffnang
All in all, Taste of Melbourne is an interesting experience. While I would not describe that experience as being one that could replace dining at one of the exhibiting restaurants, it can certainly give you an idea of what a restaurant has to offer and most importantly, can be a really fun day out with family and friends.