Review: The Silk Road Dinner at Spice Temple
10 Bligh Street, Sydney NSW 2000
Monday – Wednesday 12-3pm, 6-10:30pm, Thursday – Friday: 12 – 3pm, 6 – 11pm, Saturday – 5:30pm -11pm & Sunday 6 -10pm
2 8078 1888
For some, food is just about the flavour. For Spice Temple Head Chef, Andy Evans, food is so much more than that. It’s about the culture, history and the story.
On May 22, Spice Temple with pay homage to China’s Silk Road, as Evans lead guests on this experience through China’s famous network of trade routes known as “The Silk Road,” explaining elements of each dish along the way.
Hunter and Bligh were lucky enough to preview the six-course Silk Road dinner and can ensure it’s a path you’ll want to travel.
With a refreshing Spice Temple Rooster cocktail – a delight of passionfruit, passionfruit, aperol and limoncello in hand – your journey awaits you.
The menu begins in Hangzhou, the capital of China’s Zhejiang province and the gateway to the Grand Canal. We were served prawn and iceberg salad topped with salted olive and black bean dressing, and fresh belly bacon with garlic and lemon to start. The prawn and iceberg salad was a highlight dish with its rich flavour and added lightness of the iceberg.
Travelling south to Guangzhou, diners are served superior chicken and a dish of pork and fungi bean curd rolls.
Next stop is a favourite – Chinese Buns! Travelling to Peking, diners experience the juicy pork and shallot buns with hoisin which do indeed taste as good as they sound. Steamed to golden perfection and coated with the sweet hoisin sauce – delicious!
In Xina, the region’s spicy pickled cucumbers, and red braised pork belly with wood ear fungus are showcased in a sizzling pot. The presentation of pork belly dish was as outstanding as the flavour with the large, steaming dish occupying the centre of the table and filling the space with delicious spices.
If there’s one destination during this journey that you’ll look back at with fond memories, it’s Anxi. Evans presents exquisite traditional flavours with a modern flair with his Lamian, hand made tumeric noodles, and David Blackmore’s famous wagyu brisket and chilli. It was a mutual agreement around the table that this dish was the standout of the dinner. The noodles, shaped to resemble that of the horses ear, were rich, fluffy and the wagyu brisket was epitomised cooked to perfection. The hint of chilli was the extra kick and added element of flavour to the dish. Diners had no hesitation reaching over for second servings.
The final stop on the Silk Road dinner is Kashgar located in China far west. An important stop in the Silk Road 2,000 years ago, the region today is famous its spices and materials. The menu served lamb shashliks, baked bread, chickpea salad and tomatoes. This dish delivered ingredients traditionally served in the far west and highlighted the different culinary experiences of the Silk Road. To finish, diners are served a pistachio nougat parfait with almonds and pomegranate to finish and perhaps it’s my sweet tooth talking, but this was my favourite! The subtle sweetness of the parfait allowed the natural flavours of the pomegranate to take centre stage and the crispness of the almonds added perfect texture.
This culinary journey is outstanding with an incredible array of dishes showcased along the way. Evan’s execution of the dinner is impeccable, with the menu presenting traditional ingredients with elegance. It’s a seamless transition from one destination to the next as diners experience the rich culture and flavours of the Silk Road.
The Silk Road dinner is priced at $99pp and wine can be matched with each course for the additional price of $55pp.
The dinner is part of this season’s Producer Series which also showcases the restaurants rejuvenated bar and fresh cocktail specials. The refreshed bar menu offers diners a selection of five beautifully elegant noodle dishes, including crispy chow mein with pork relish, sou mian noodles with chicken and green chilli and belt noodle with braised garlic and shredded wagyu, are all priced at $12 – available between 12pm to 3pm and 6pm to 11pm.
Zodiac cocktails are also featured during cocktail hour – weekday 4pm to 6pm.