So I am off on another adventure again… and of course before I hop on my flight I have to stop by one of my favourites spots – the Qantas First Lounge! I love this place and I think the service, charm and view cannot be beaten! I am especially excited to try out their new winter menu and here are some the dishes I tried on my recent visit.
Smoked chicken salad with tea eggs and coriander inspired by Spice Temple
This would have to be one of my favourite dishes in the lounge. The beautiful succulent chicken harmoniously and effortlessly pairs with the mild soft smoked eggs with that translucent gooey yolk forming a gentle paste on the tongue! It is oh good, the dish wins on the eggs alone. Then the “heatie and spicy” bite of coriander disrupts the dish introducing a lovely streak of spice and oils to stamp dishe’s oriental origins. It is a dish that appears simple at first glance but delivers on a transcendent dining experience with wonderful balance and textures. I simply loved it.
I pair the dishes with a champagne and let the refreshing wheaty flavours of brioche and crystal-like pure acidity swirl in my mouth to provide that lovely stingy mouth feel when you’ve just finished a spicy/heat-filled dish.
Duck leg confit with cabbage, bacon and chestnuts
The rich oily gamey duck meat offers a beautiful experience. The crispy crunchy skin was treat to work through before reaching the full flavoured duck meat. The crunch of the cabbage provided a lovely base and yes the texture (fall apart mushiness) of the chestnuts adds some lovely texture and epitomises the wintery nature of the dish. I felt the buttery sauce base and bacon was probably not required as the strength of flavour and oils from the duck was sufficient for the dish. I paired the duck with a lovely glass of Pinot Noir – very classic indeed. The lightness and the fruit intensity (dark cherry, raspberry and blueberries with hints of sweet spice) of the Pinot stood up to the duck with its usual style and grace.
Steamed Blue Eye Trevalla with black bean, salted red chilli and choy sum
Later in the evening, as my flight was quite late, I had a supper item of the . The beautiful rich flakey flesh of the blue eye was a treat being paired with the intense salt of the black bean and spice chilli which provided a wonderful accompaniment to the fish. A classic oriental dish which balanced seasoning with fresh produce to deliver a wonderful tasting experience.
Rye Honey Cake with Apples, Chestnut Cream, Gelato
I actually quite liked this dessert. It had beautiful a crumby honey cake (which wasn’t too sweet) with some residual honey on the side. The apples were oh so soft and plump with the grainy texture to provide a fruit intensive sugar hit, while the gelato provided a soft rich creamy balance to the sweetness of the apple. I couldn’t quite describe the chestnut cream to you but it was a truly wonderful and different flavour and texture which dazzled the dish a little. A well balanced and well rounded dish indeed.
Of course nothing is quite like a lovely flat white to finish the evening. The rich crema of the espresso and soft silky milky coffee puts my mind at ease and places a signature on a wonderful time at the First Lounge.