Vicolo Merimbula

——-08/06/2012——-

We headed down to the south coast for the long weekend and because we arrived late we were going to just order dessert but when I found out that Vicolo weren’t open for lunch, we had to make room in our stomachs and order dinner too.

The bar was well stocked with fresh herbs, fruits and alcohol. We got a gin and tonic and a fruity mocktail and we weren’t disappointed.

When I checked Urbanspoon for a good place to eat in Merimbula, Vicolo had a 100% like rate, not a bad place to start. I heard suggestions to get the pork belly and who doesn’t love pork belly.

Twice cooked pork belly with rosemary honey jus with chat potatoes, red cabbage and onion chilli jam ($29.00) There was a lot of stuff going on on this plate and I couldn’t finish all the vegetables. I was disappointed to find that the skin wasn’t crispy and it was a bit chewy. I would like to think that this was just a ‘bad batch’.

Crab meat, squid, garlic, chilli, white wine and fresh herb linguine ($28.00) It was a huge portion and probably not the most well plated but it was good and we finished every last bit. 

Share plate taste of all desserts ($20.00) Beautifully presented and we didn’t know where to start, so we just started sampling from left to right.

Sorbet– individually scooped and portioned when it was frozen so when it was served, the sorbet really cold and refreshing. The flavours were really good and acted as a good palette cleanser. 

Individual tiramisu– this had a reeeeeeally strong coffee taste, almost overwhelming.

Vanilla bean panna cotta with a fruit salad– a perfect wobbly panna cotta with a tasty fruit salad, possibly my favourite dessert on the platter.

Chocolate tart with berry compote– This was a RICH dark chocolate tart. I had to take little bites with panna cotta in between.

With very friendly staff and all the locals eating here, it is a sure sign that this restaurant is doing very well and will prosper in this small coastal town. There were many things I wanted to try on the menu and I hope to come back and get the opportunity to do so.

Venue: Vicolo

Address: Shop 6, 11 Merimbula Drive, Merimbula NSW 2548

Phone: (02) 6495 2662

Websitehttp://www.vicolomerimbula.com.au/

Vicolo Merimbula on Urbanspoon

Ellacure

——-02/06/2012——-

It has been a few years since I’ve been to Ellacure and it hasn’t changed much- I still got lost getting there, it’s still very busy with delicious food and a fantastic menu that is hard to choose just one thing from.

We thought we had it well timed, 2:30pm high tea and an 8:30pm dinner, we didn’t count on being so full after so many scrumptious cakes and pastries. Despite all of us saying how full we were and how we were just going to have one course as opposed to three, after looking at the menu, it didn’t take that much arm twisting to convince us to have three anyway.   

The hustle and bustle of the dining room even after 9pm.

Entrees~

Rosemary and sea salt pizza crust with garlic, pesto and olive spreads ($9.00) A nice variety of spreads but I was surprised to find the garlic one so sweet.

Twice cooked pork belly with apple and mint salsa ($18.00) The salsa was really nice and the pork wasn’t too fatty, the only disappointing thing was that the skin wasn’t really crispy.

Salt and pepper calamari, rocket and parmesan aioli ($17.00) I found the calamari to be small short fragmented pieces but the aioli was nice and it was the perfect parmesan to rocket ratio.

Creative salad(vegan $10.00) We let the chefs have creative control to develop a vegan salad. A nice mixture of pear, nuts, tomato, rocket topped with an oil dressing.

Mains~

Grilled lamb cutlets, parmesan polenta, smoked tomato chutney, rocket and feta ($34.00). My friend really enjoyed her lamb cutlets and she said they were grilled to perfection.

Spaghetti with baby spinach, cherry tomato, olives, capers and chilli (vegan $22.00). The pasta was a little oily but overall still very nice.

Specials~

Slow cooked lamb shanks on top of potato mash and a bed of lentils ($31.00). Really tender shanks but my friends found bits of it too fatty, other than that they cleaned it to the bone.

Beef eye fillet with blue vein cheese sauce on a bed of mashed potato ($36.00). I know mashed potato might not be special to some, but when done right my heart just melts. It was served hot (<which never happens) with a lovely texture.

It takes a lot to please me when I eat a steak at a restaurant, I’ve eaten plenty of $50.00+ steaks being very disappointed. I really enjoyed this dish from the steak to the mash and surprisingly (because I don’t usually eat blue vein cheese), the sauce!

A friend was kind enough to bring a beautiful cake from Patisserie New York

New Orleans Caramel Gooey Chocolate Cake- Southern classic flavours, moist tender chocolate sponge, layered and iced with toffied caramel and finished with caramel chocolate ganache. Delicious, thanks Mellie!

The staff were extremely friendly and attentive despite also being very busy. Great food, the only thing I can suggest is to book to avoid disappointment. I want to come back to try their brunch menu (and eat more of their food in general).

Venue: Ellacure

Address: Corner of Braybrooke and Battye Street, Bruce ACT 2617

Phone: (02) 6251 0990

Websitehttp://ellacure.com.au/

Opening hours: Lunch & Dinner 7 Days. Weekend Brunch from 8

Ellacure Restaurant & Bar on Urbanspoon