Anyway, a brand new restaurant in Brisbane has released a brand new Spring menu based on fresh local produce, and they have plated up the blossoming meadows and rolling green hills of this season beautifully.
Habitat has been serving up delightful foodie creations in West End for just over three months now. In that time the team have been finding their feet a bit, but with some great groundwork ideas at play, Habitat is quickly gaining a reputation as a local champion.
Every week, the Habitat team out to West End markets to check out what's both fresh in season and locally grown. Everyone gets inspired, loads up with an armful of produce, and trundles back to the kitchen to brainstorm some new menu ideas.
And with so many creative foodie minds at work, you're bound to get something interesting on your plate. Like a dessert eggplant tart. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Let's kick off with some of my top choices of starters from the new menu.
- Pumpkin bread
- Salted Brown Anchovies, White Beans, Baby Kale, Saffron Aioli, Garden Flowers
- Crocodile Dumplings with an Asian Inspired Consume
- Pork Loin Roulade, Purple Potato, Chic Pea, Crispy Pigs Ear, Seeded Mustard Dressing
Each of these dishes were fresh and interesting.
The pork loin roulade is a must-order for anyone habituating themselves to Habitat. It was moist and tasty and the accompanying salad was not just delicious, but super pretty too with the purple potato creating some conversation around the table.
Serving up flowers with their thick, tasty anchovies just made you think of a fresh, blooming garden. How can that not make you happy?
The consume that was served with the dumplings had a plethora of subtle flavours happening in the one small bowl, which was delightful.
- Pickled Watermelon Radish, Tatsoi Avocado, Chervil, Pumpkin Mousse Beach Bananas
- Baked Ricotta, Baby Vegetables, Kale, Horseradish Mayonnaise
The pickled watermelon radish was truly one of the most interesting dishes I've ever tried. The radishes tasted like watermelon and were so moreish. The pumpkin mousse was such a winner as well- it was both rich and light and I really could have eaten a bucket-load.
Lastly the baked ricotta worked so well with the baby carrots, and again just looked like Spring had sprung on to a plate.
The mains below are:
- Blue Label Beef Fillet (250gm), Thyme, Garlic Mash Potato, Scallop Tortellini, Buttered Green Beans, Porchini Jus
- Roasted Stuffed Mushroom, Zucchini and Goats Cheese, Dukkah Spice, Rocket, Preserved Lemon, Pea Puree
- Oven Roasted Lamb Rump, Dauphinoise Potato, Baby Spinach, Blistered Tomatoes, Juniper Berry Jus
- Crispy Pork Belly, Blue Cheese Semoilna Gnocchi, Wood Ear Mushrooms, Tomato Herb Salsa
I went for the beef fillet after hearing that Habitat use organic, grass fed beef sourced regionally. This beef seriously was one of the nicest bits of meat I've ever had, and I have been raving about it to anyone who will listen to me this week.
It was an incredibly thick cut, but still cooked medium-rare throughout, just the way I had ordered. The scallop tortellini was absolutely fantastic with a sweet scallop carefully wrapped within the fresh pasta. The mash was pure butter (yum!) and the jus was rich and earthy.
Their cocktails again feature some local names, with liqueurs from the Mt Tambourine Distillery on feature here. The below right cocktail uses a Eau De Vie Pomme and was fresh liquid apple with a slight kick at the end.
Obviously, each of these dishes just look absolutely amazing. Habitat has absolutely nailed dessert presentation.
- Rocky Road
- Strawberry Bavarois, Berries, Mint Syrup, Spun Sugar
- Eggplant and Espresso Tart, Creme Fraiche, Candied Beetroot
- Deconstructed Vanilla, Honeycomb Cheesecake, Coconut Jelly, Chocolate
- Milk Chocolate Mousse, Almond Tuille, Fresh Berries, Mint
- Mango Brulee, Ice Cream, Biscotti
Each of the desserts were rich and again just fun to eat. I absolutely loved the deconstructed vanilla and honeycomb cheesecake as well as the strawberry bavarois.
The honeycomb that was served up with the cheesecake was housemade, and included popping candy, which were the fireworks to finish off the food party that just happened in your mouth from such amazing food all night.
One thing I didn't rate from dessert were the candied beetroot that was served up with the eggplant and espresso tart. They just weren't candied enough for me, and I felt like I was just eating beetroot. Which would be fine on an entree or main- it just felt out of place with dessert. The mix of eggplant and espresso in the tart actually made for a rich earthy chocolatey flavour and was fantastic. If ever the earth runs out of cacao trees, just mix eggplant and coffee and you're all set!
The creaminess of the brulee was absolutely spot on and the chocolate mousse with almond tuille just oozed decadence and was a delight to eat.
Habitat's philosophy of skillfully using local ingredients shined brightly throughout this dinner. Like the Spring sun while you're working on an excel spreadsheet in a meadow.