Belvedere Bar and Grill, Brisbane

In celebration of the end of the conference leg in Brisbane, dinner had been booked at the Belvedere Bar and Grill in Hamilton’s Portside Wharf. Obviously with a party over 30 people strong spread over several large tables, a set alternating menu had been prepared to minimize delays.

The air was warm and a touch gusty, being by the water when we arrived to an offering of canapes, including piping hot arcini balls, sushi, salt and pepper calamari. I burnt my tongue on the first arcini ball and learnt my lesson quickly as a reminder to pace myself for the evening ahead.

Hinderland zucchini flowers filled with goats curd and braised red vegetables

To start, I got the Hinderland zucchini flowers filled with goats curd and braised red vegetables. Each plate came with three heavily battered large flowers, making the entree much more main-like than appetizer. Two would have been a fair portion – three was just too much.

The batter was also quite heavy and its tan was too close to brown for my comfort. I would have preferred a lighter batter, but given how strong the goats curd flavours were in the filling, it might’ve been for the best.

 

Five spiced slow roasted pork belly with pear puree, a nashi pear and pickled ginger salad

Sitting next to me meant the SO and I got a different item on the menu. From the sample he proffered my way, the five spice was more subtle than I expected – not a bad thing in my book. But the SO particularly enjoyed the nashi pear and pickled ginger salad. It was a refreshing touch to the warm evening.

 

A selection of sides were laid out along the table for everyone to partake, which I enjoyed. It made for comfort grazing between bites of one’s main meal.

Roast winter root vegetables with rosemary and garlic oil

 

‘Our’ fat chips with aioli and chilli jam

 

Slow roasted lamb shoulder with moghreib cous cous, yoghurt sauce and harissa

After perusing the menu, I had my heart set on the baked gold band snapper. The SO had his eye on that too and adamantly refused to be a gentleman by agreeing to exchange the main with me, should he have been presented with the snapper… much to our table’s amusement.

Baked gold band snapper with grilled fennel, grilled asparagus and shaved fennel and orange salad

By some miracle, both the SO and I got the baked gold band snapper, and it was glorious! I enjoyed every sliver and was so stoked we both got to savour the dish, which included some rich brightness from the citrus.

Passionfruit tart with pineapple, mint and toasted coconut salad

The passionfruit tart was almost certainly the lesser of two evils in the dessert department. After the heavy entree and the amazing main, I was as stuffed as a Thanksgiving turkey and prayed I would get the tart, which I hoped would deliver on some tartness to deliver me from a state of overindulgence nausea.

Well, the tart was most certainly tarty and while I still wasn’t able to finish it, I willed myself to at least clear my plate of the salad – a tropical mix of fresh pineapple (not too sweet), mint (subtle, for which I was glad) and toasted coconut (an interesting element that worked well.

 

Sticky date pudding with liquorice root toffee sauce, walnut crumble and crème fraiche

The SO was not as lucky and steeled himself (more especially his stomach) to give the sticky date pudding a good go. He swore to me the liquorice root flavour in the toffee sauce was subtle, but I still found myself with a face twisted as if I had sucked a lemon from a taste. It was a lovely moist pudding otherwise – I’m just not a fan of liquorice.

 

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