Dinner at Michael’s on Matthew Flinders
October 23, 2007
Just at the spur of the moment we decided to go out for dinner, probably because the fridge was empty, well not empty but nothing that excited us. So Michael’s on Matthew Flinders Drive was our choice. At 6.40pm I called for a table, Ryan accepted booking for 7.30.
We arrived dead on time which is unusual for us generally we are fashionably late. We were shown to our table by the window, not to much to see with the doors closed and the big tree lit up over the beach, yes Michael’s is directly on the beach, it couldn’t get any closer unless you were on a boat. The view however during the day is awesome, the sandy beach, blue water, the view to the Keppel Islands, what more could you ask for. Well maybe great food and drink.
Firstly lets describe the restaurant. It was only our second time at Michael’s and I spotted a few changes. The lovely wine glasses with the engraved ‘M’, the complimentary bread with balsamic and olive oil. The tables are clothed and set perfectly with a basic napkin fold and the menu in place, which I do like. Also no table numbers, a sign of a classy place. Slick lines and colors that give the feel of a certain elegance. Unfortunately it was a quiet night but that only made it better for those dinning.
The service from Ryan was tops. Great up-selling ability, very smooth but not pushy, that’s an art in-itself. We studied the menu which has grown from our first experience, great to see. A well balanced menu I must add covering most palates. Before we got to make our choice, we were presented with an ‘amusegueule’, what’s that you ask, well check out my report for amuse-gueule. This complimentary petite dish was cucumber sorbet with fine tomato and onion with salmon caviar. This is a first for Yeppoon and hats off to chef Michael, the impact was just great, the combination cold & smooth with the slightly salty caviar popping in the mouth, refreshing yet intriguing, (maybe loose the onion). Let me help educate those out there about ameusgeule eticate, this is a ‘gift’ from the chef, his way of saying welcome, so don’t go asking for choices, take it or leave it.
Onto our order, which by then I was inspired for more. The sorbet and caviar were on two of the entrees so they fell out of my choice but still there was plenty to chose from. Eventually we ordered. Not long after, our entrees arrived. Moni had the buffalo mozzarella with proscuitto ham and apple balsamic $15- which was absolutely fantastic 10/10 now that’s saying something. Two products that don’t need much doing to, but if inferior quality then it doesn’t work, with the addition of salt, cracked pepper and the balsamic it was a marriage in heaven.
I had the scallops with rare tuna $17- Four scallops in the shell with roe on, topped with perfect squares of rare tuna and salmon caviar with tomato and chervil. Very nice, but I am not a fan of the scallop roe, the flavors were good. These were cleared and our mains were quickly with us.
I had lamb on mint and pea salad $ 33- This was excellent. The lamb cooked to perfection, I couldn’t do it better myself, the pea and mint had great flavor and with the jus being top quality it was a great meal, highly recommended. I also had a side of smashed baby potato, very good flavor and at $5.50 plenty. My meal didn’t need them, but I had to see for myself. Moni had the veal ravioli with tomato fondue sage butter $15- from the entree selection as her main meal. Two entrees suit her better than often a main meal. The fondue with sage was very flavorsome. The ravioli was cooked well and was good filled, (often lots of dough no filling) the filling though was a little plain and rather pastey in texture. Presentation was once again great. With our meals we drank a 2004 Andrew Garret merlot $ 37.50 Question, I wonder how it is in full summer with the red wines if they tend to get a little too warm? That will be something to monitor.
By this time Chef Michael had spied us and we then had a chat and sampled some new sorbets that he is working on. We had ordered the creme brulee which came with a perfect sugar crust and great flavor, a huge serve I will add, probably ideal to share if full and want to sample a dessert. With a bottle of Riesling from Neilson NZ which was a bit weak as dessert wines go, but still it was great to even taste it with these ‘custard apple’ treats. Michael having his own icecream maker it is definitely a passion of his to churn away every day to produce the best ice on the coast. So $147- later, and a great night behind us, it’s time to publish my review.
John Mundell will definitely return.