Victoria 2019

Dunkeld, 18 May


  We stayed at the Royal Mail Hotel, an old pub that has been thoroughly modernised. *
  The view from our room. †
  The hotel's owner has an amazing wine cellar, with over 30,000 bottles of wine: 60% from France and mostly quite old. *
  So, lunch at The Parker St Project in the old hotel dining room where I had a great salad of grilled zucchini and zucchini ribbons. Then the wine tour then the dinner at Wickens at the Royal Mail (named for the chef). These are some of the amuse bouche, set on a 3D printed plate in the shape of their kitchen garden. *
  More amuse bouche. This was to be a 5 course degustation dinner but you get all these little extras. *
  Having seen the wine cellar, we splurged on the French wine match, reasoning we would never again be in a restaurant that had access to so many beautiful wines. So after a welcoming glass of champagne, we had a new wine with each course. About a 60ml pour so we weren't going to get squiffy. Most of them were up to 20 years old and a fresh as a daisy. The French waiter staffing the bar got quite excited when he poured a few of them for us. The wine was kept fresh under the Coravin process which injects argon into the bottle to stop the remainder of the wine from oxidizing. *
  Cylinder of beetroot with bone marrow. Earthy and unctuous. 2011 Weinbach Reisling. *
  Whipped butter again, this time with a little malt flavour. *
  1999 Chenin Blanc. *
  Blue eye, oyster cream and fried oyster. Fantastic! *
  2004 Domaine Dennis Mortet, pinot noir, gevry chambertin. No astringent tannins and taste in every part of the mouth and tongue. *
  Great ocean duck with a fig leaf parcel of confit duck and liver. *
  The glasses seemed to get bigger and bigger. *
  The kitchen was so impressed with our idea of eating our way around Victoria that they gave us the first taste of a new dish, hare, red cabbage and parsnip chips. The hare was quite red and gamey, not at all like rabbit, and the wine was a Chateauneuf du Pape, very smooth, rich and elegant. *
  With a dish of Royal Mail lamb and grilled lettuce with rose hip we enjoyed a 1996 pommerol. Complex, pure and mouth filling. *
  Palate cleanser of watermelon juice, sweet woodruff cream and compressed watermelon balls. *
  1999 Chateau d'Yquem. Oh wow! Not at all heavy like our stickies. Fresh and pure and lingering in the mouth. *
  Acorn flour millefeuille, pear and acorn filling and ice cream made from fallen oak leaves steeped in the cream. Very autumnal. Maybe a bit bitter but still lovely. *
  And to finish, home made jelly fruits. Very cute and left a lovely last taste. *

After a light breakfast the next morning, we set off for Daylesford.



Copyright © 2019 by *Lynn Booth or †Nick Booth. Please contact us if you wish to use a photo.