The call of dessert was difficult to ignore. Not even the advancing cloud or the intermittent rain could dampen the enthusiasm to drive across Sydney‘s inner west to Dedes Restaurant’s scenic position in Abbotsford.
Dedes Desserts Event
Occupying a prime waterfront location at the tip of Great North Road, Dedes Restaurant sits atop the Sydney Rowing Club overlooking the tranquil waters of the Parramatta River.
Dining room with water views
Part of the Dedes Group which includes Peter Kuruvita’s Flying Fish, Dedes Restaurant with its 200 seat capacity and panoramic views of Abbotsford Cove has the markings of contemporary dining in a relaxed atmosphere, a wedding reception venue and a space suited for special functions and private events.
Late afternoon at Abbotsford Cove
The occasion was a food blogger event, a dessert tasting session organised by Denéa Buckingham of the Gourmet Rabbit. Restaurant Manager Kelly Payne welcomed our group of nine to Dedes, introduced Head Chef Luis Da Rosa to our table and offered a little explanation of every dish as it was presented. What was originally planned as a sweet tasting session turned into a leisurely afternoon with generous platters of hot and cold seafood that preceded desserts.
Moet et Chandon and Wallis Lake Oysters
Starting with a glass of bubbles and oysters set the scene for an afternoon of seafood indulgence.
Dedes Hot and Cold Seafood Platter
Making up the cold seafood platter were fresh oysters from Wallis Lake in NSW, Greek-style marinated octopus with cubes of feta and olives, smoked salmon with whole capers and large BBQ prawns.
Angels on horseback (left) Scampi and Barramundi (right)
Vying for competition on the hot platter were grilled scampi and crayfish tails, succulent baked barramundi, salt and pepper calamari and horseback prawns wrapped in crispy bacon, accompanied with thick hand-cut chips.
2009 Watershed Unoaked Chardonnay, Seafood on a Plate, Chicory
Plates of cooked chicory and green beans dressed in oil and a squeeze of lemon juice added a touch of home cooking to the restaurant dining experience. The seafood feast went down very well with a crisp 2009 Watershed Unoaked Chardonnay from Margaret River.
Late afternoon at Dedes Restaurant
Dedes at Sunset
With the sun setting over the Parramatta River, pastry chef Jason Langhorne‘s dessert degustation took us on a sweet journey paired with a range of beverages.
Strawberry crème brûlée and vanilla bean shortbread
The strawberry crème brûlée was served with a vanilla bean shortbread on top and paired with a glass of NV Moët et Chandon Champagne. Crème brûlée is the signature dessert in the Gourmantic kitchen and therefore not a dish I order in restaurants. As a purist, I prefer the classic vanilla bean to any creative combinations which makes reviewing this dessert a little biased. While it may lack a little in presentation, the burnt sugar topping packed a good crunch, while the strawberry flavour did not overpower the creamy consistency.
Chocolate truffle dacquoise, almond praline & Turkish delight ice cream
The chocolate truffle dacquoise with a crunchy almond praline was a chocolate lover’s treat topped with the delicate taste of Turkish Delight ice cream. Paired with a Frangelico Frappé served in a shot glass with shavings of ice, this was my favourite dessert, combining the flavours of chocolate with the nuttiness of the almond praline and Frangelico.
Flourless citrus cake, lemon semi freddo and orange caramel
Citrusy, light and definitely moreish, the flourless citrus cake was served with a lemon semi freddo sitting on top of spun sugar and drizzled with an orange caramel sauce. This dish was well paired with a Piccolo Latte, Cinque Stelle Espresso by Vittoria. The coffee lacked the sharp bitterness that has me reaching for sugar and offered a good balance of sweetness between the dessert and the hot beverage.
Baked rhubarb tart, cinnamon crumble and toffee apple ice cream
With a swan-like elegance, the baked rhubarb tart with cinnamon crumble and toffee apple ice cream was presented to our table. This dish took the humble stewed rhubarb and turned it into an elegant dessert that paired well with the robust NV Galway Pipe Port.
Dessert Plate for Two
The Dessert Plate for Two showcased all four desserts, the ideal choice for diners who like a little of everything or who have trouble deciding how to indulge their sweet tooth.
We finished with chocolate petit fours oozing with a rich, liquid centre.
Piccolo Latte (left), Yaya’s homemade pumpkin pie in filo pastry (top right), Peppermint Tea (bottom right)
After the dessert feast, the peppermint tea was a welcome touch to aid digestion. Yaya’s homemade pumpkin pie exemplified the Dedes hospitality – a reminder of the family owned approach to business and the personal touch that was well appreciated by all.
Yaya’s Home-Made Greek Easter Bread
A feature in many Greek and Christian Orthodox homes around Easter, Yaya’s home-made Easter bread with coloured Easter eggs provided a colourful centrepiece near the entrance to the restaurant.
Food Bloggers at Work
The Dedes Desserts event was organised by Denéa of @gourmetrabbit and was attended by Sydney food bloggers @heneedsfood @spicyicecream @bonvivantblog @frombecca @simonleong @gastronomous_a and @mrgourmantic.
Gourmantic attended the Dedes Desserts event on Sunday 10th April 2011 as media guests.
Sydney Rowing Club
613 Great North Road
Abbotsford NSW 2046
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