300 Smith St Collingwood, VIC
03 9419 2202
My dear friend Basketballfreak came down for a visit so a good feed is warranted. I have heard a lot about Saint Crispin and have been dying to try it for quite some time. ThankfullyI managed to book a table on a busy Sunday night, even though we got stuck near a drafty doorway which I was a bit sad about :( Good that the service is warm and friendly and we learn not to mind the sudden draft when patrons come in and out of the restaurant.
Seeing that I am pregnant, the waiter kindly got a bar tender to mix me a mocktail- lemon and honey drink. It actually tasted a bit like something I drink when I have a cold- LOL but it wasn’t too bad.
We decided to have a three course meal $60 although I was super tempted to have the 5 or 7 course tasting menu… maybe next time. We started off with complimentary madelines. Madelines? You asked. Isn’t madelines sweet?! Actually these madelines are slightly sweet, but it was made with olives and a soy milk dipping sauce. It was slightly sweet, slightly salty and a little bit nutty. Very interesting start to our meal.
We also had some Snap, Crackle and Pop $9, which was pork skin that actually makes “snap crackle and pop” sounds when it got to our table!! :D It had this really interesting sweet smokey powder and oh so moorish. We were guessing what this powder is and I was like hrm tasted like sweet paprika! Hubby asked the waitress and never would we have guessed that it was dashi, brown sugar and sesame powder! Wow!
Our entrees arrived. I could only sadly looked on while Basketballfreak and Hubby yumgasmed over their lightly cured Hiramasa Kingfish and vension tartare respectively. Basketballfreak simply could not stop raving about the freshness of the fish and the beautifully thinly sliced raw octopus that is oh-so-tender. Hubby told me the vension was melt in your mouth good.
My entree was the quail w kombu, shaved cuttlefish and mushroom with dashi stock. The quail was cooked perfectly, still slightly pink in the middle. However, I do feel slightly let down by the dashi stock- I found it wayyyyy too salty so the mushroom and cuttlefish that’s swimming in it became super salty. I had to down two glasses of water to help wash away the salty flavour in my mouth.
Hubby and Basketballfreak both ordered the wagyu rump and brisket for a $20 supplement. Both felt that the edges of the wagyu rump was slightly tough for their liking, but perfectly melt-in-your-mouth in the middle. I tried a little bit of the brisket and it was oh-so-tender, served with dollops of black pudding (?!) sauce. The parsley risotto cuts the fattiness of the meat, and added an interesting flavour.
My dish was a beautifully cooked mushroom with hen’s egg and wild rice. A huge variety of wild and farmed mushroom added different textures and flavours to the dish, I was slightly naughty to have an undercooked hen’s egg but it was so fresh that I simply couldn’t resist it. The wild rice added a crunchy texture and smokey flavour, and I loved every single bite.
Dessert time and all of us simply could not resist the cheesecake. A deconstructed passionfruit cheesecake with beurre noisette crumbs which would be super rich, except the three elements of mandarin: dehyrated, sorbet and meringue that lifts the whole dish to another level of yumgasmic. We all commented that sometimes, deconstructed anything can be a bit wanky, but in this case, it was a perfect end to our dinner.
We really love Saint Crispin, Basketballfreak rated a 9.5 with its amazing food and service, but only because if he rated it 10 there is no where else to go. I would certainly give it a 9, I was a bit disappointed with the dashi in my quail, but the other dishes were nothing short of amazing. I can’t wait to come back.