The Epicurean Centre- Brown Brothers

The Epicurean Centre- Brown Brothers
239 Milawa-Bobinawarrah Road, Milawa VIC Australia
(03)5720 5500

Wow a city girl like me sure do travel around the country these days!  First it was mushroom foraging, and now Milawa!  Might have to do Dunkled soon!

Dr. Ben raved about the food in his Bright/Milawa trip so we asked Dr. Ben to plan a weekend trip away to eat our way around Bright/Milawa.

First stop was The Epicurean Centre at Brown Brothers winery.  What really excites Dr. Ben and most of us was that you get wine matched with your meal, and the cost was included in the price of your meal.

First we decided on several appetisers.  Starving already, we welcomed the sight of our mutli-textured ham hock, pheasant & chorizo terrine $14, oh so tender lamb tongue, potato & mustard $13, Formichi salami plate which was OK (but then I am not a huge salami fan) $10 and cheesy and tender ox-cheek and tripe gratin $15.

With appetisers out of the way, entree came, matched with wine.  That being said if you like a particular wine, you can always ask them to swap it, free of charge.  I ordered the confit ocean trout, beetroot, snow pea tendrils and white gazpacho sauce $23.  OMG it was yumgasmic.  Very very flavoursome, the ocean trout simply melts in your mouth. Mmm don’t ask me about the white gazpacho sauce- I am a very bad foodie- I thought it was hummus… at least it tasted ever so slightly hummusey :P

Quail, black pudding polpette, pumpkin and apple $23.  Dr. Ben is not a huge decontructed fan so when he found that his mustard poached quail was actually deconstructed he didn’t look overly impressed.  But one bite of this quickly dissipates his concerns- it was beautiful.  He couldn’t stop raving on about the black pudding too.

Instead of mains I ordered another entree to save space for dessert.  Duck sausage, shaved cuttlefish, cabbage and mint, preserved lemon aioli $23.  I can’t say I tasted a strong lemon aioli flavour but this dish is very light and refreshing which of course was surprising given that it’s duck sausage.  The duck sausage had just enough fat to make it tasty and moist.   The cabbage and mint and shaved cuttlefish definitely cuts the fat and lifts the dish.   I think there were about 3 or 4 small rounds of duck sausage so it was not too filling.

Between the eight of us we tried all the mains on the menu except the chicken breast.  Hubby had a slow-cooked, rolled leg of lamb, spinach and potato puree, vegetables provencale $38.  When Hubby cut the lamb open it doesn’t look that crash hot… it actually looked quite dry.  But looks could be deceiving.  As it turned out the meat was very very tender and juicy and flavoursome.  The chef must be having fun deceiving us cos the avocado looking clump was actually the spinach and potato mash.  It was smooth and buttery.  YUM

Chowie wasn’t as impressed with his stuffed loin of rabbit, pork belly, mustard fruits, buckwheat polenta and chestnut puree $37.  Apparently the rabbit was pretty tough.

I was trying to have less carbs so I was eyeing jealously at Shoe Queen’s and Ahmanda’s Autumn farro risotto, mushrooms, salted ricotta, poached egg & pistachio $35.  Apparently it was really good but very very rich.

Other dish sampled was King prawns, salt cod boulangere, celeriac remoulade and butter-poached leeks $38 which was apparently OK and Eye fillet of beef, braised butter beans, caramelised onion and horseradish butter $38.

Dessert time!  Can I admit that I am secretly a control freak and I looked at the menu before the trip?  So I have already had my mind set on the brioche- Chocolate brioche sponge, ginger creme brulee ice cream and peanut praline $16.  Sadly, I was so disappointed!  The chocolate brioche is really stodgy with not much flavour.  I don’t really think the ginger crem brulee matched with the brioche at all.  I didn’t refuse main to have this!  *cries*

Dr. Ben had an awesome pannacotta $16 which was very citrusy and wobbly- just as he liked it.  It was also decorated with really pretty jelly like thing.  Totally cute. But, once again, don’t judge the book by its cover because apparently, the carrot cake takes the prize in being the yummiest dessert out of that bunch!  WTFFFFF?  *grumpy*

Overall we had a great time at The Epicurean Centre, the staff were friendly although the service in general is a bit slow.  I probably wouldn’t recommend ordering two entrees if you have a huge appetite but it was just right for me, esp when I saw the others rolled outta the joint!

Would I recommend Brown Brothers?  For sure- just be careful what you order for dessert.  8.5/10

Our Amazing Bright Trip starts with lunch @ The Epicurean Centre- Brown Brothers Winery, then continue at Villa Gusto for dinner and the next day, at the Boynton’s Feathertop Winery.  Click on the links to view the other posts :) and thanks again Dr. Ben for organising this!

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