Sunday, October 07, 2007

Two occasions, one place........Max! Kitchen & Wines

Finally!! We've finally had our chance to savor the excellent food at Max! Kitchen & Wines. Within a short span of time, we have visited Max! twice. Excellent man, excellent cook, excellent food and excellent wines.

First occasion was just a get together of my uni mates. One of them will be getting married soon so we decided to have a small get-together to just catch up and reminisce the good old days.

We ordered starters and mains to share amongst us. Also, ordered a Jacob's Creek, sparking Chardonnay Pinot Noir as pre-dinner drinks. Sorry about the absence of pictures of the wines but I still have the bills so I should be able to give you guys the names.

First starter to arrive was the seared tuna loin with baby octopus. Served with some pickled chilli, yellow & red capsicum and a delicious dressing this dish was superb! The seared tuna loin was nice and seared on the outside while maintaining a rare inside. The baby octopus was also superbly prepared, not too soft and not too tough.

Next starter to arrive was the sea scallops with balsamic reduction. 5 huge scallops served in a pristine long plate looked so sexy that I nearly didnt take a picture of it. The scallops, like the baby octopus is one of those things that can easily go wrong but at Max!, it was again perfect! I dont think I need to elaborate further as almost all the food bloggers have blogged about this particular dish.

Next starter to arrive was the beef bresaola. The strips of beef was served on a bed of salad with cute little fresh mozzarella balls all around. I actually thought this was not as spectacular after the above starters but I absolutely adore the mozzarella.

One other starter that I dont have a picture of is the charred portobello salad. That was also expertly prepared with the savoury, earthy flavors of the charred portobello contrasting with the crisps, cool salad.

To go with our main courses, we ordered a bottle of Framingham, Pinot Noir from New Zealand. Very easy drinking and served slightly chilled as per our waiter's recommendation.

First of the starters to arrive was the Cod Fish Fillet. Served on a bed of polenta and pea sprouts this dish was simple and the natural flavors of the Cod really did shine. Was actually quite subtly flavored so a crisps white wine would have gone better with this.

Next was the Duck Fillet. This dish was delicious with the gamey taste and texture of the duck and the beautiful sauce served with it.

The last mains to arrive was the famous Shiraz Braised Wagyu Beef Cheeks. Served on polenta with a mushroom ragout, this dish was absolutely magic. The beef cheeks were so tender that I didnt even need the knife, just a fork would do. The sauce also was beautiful and rich with flavors from the shiraz and the earthy tones of the mushrooms mixing nicely with the polenta.

We stayed till quite late at Max!. So happened it was Max's first anniversary since he opened the restaurant and he brought up a bottle of bubbly to share and celebrate with us. Had a nice chat and found Max to be a friendly, warm man. Congratulations on your first year and may there be many more to come!!

That ends my first visit to Max!

Second visit to Max! was during Tofu Delivery King and Ketchup Queen's engagement party. They actually called up earlier in the week to book the place and Max was kind enough to let them bring in their own bubbly (Moet & Chandon, brut imperial) for the occasion. It was a four course meal with the bubbly, red and white wine and also coffee or tea at the end with deserts.

First course was a combination of baked (I think) scallop with cheese and smoked salmon with balsamic vinegar and dressing. The scallops were good with a nice cheesy topping. The smoked salmon was also good with the dressing that reminds me of the same one they use for the seared tuna loin.

Second course was of course the Seared Tuna Loin with Baby Octopus. I didnt take a picture of this but it was basically the same as my last visit only this time served on a round plate.

For the mains, we had a choice of either the Cod Fish Fillet or the Lamb Chops. I choose the Lamb Chops seeing as I've already tried the fish. The lamb chops were absolutely beautiful. Cooked to perfection, it was nice and seared on the outside while maintaining a nice rare inside!!

The last course was desert where we were served chocolate s0uffle with vanilla ice-cream and marinated strawberries. The souffle was served warm and it was quite a rich souffle with a molten chocolate centre. It was excellent but I felt could do with more ice-cream!!

Anyway, two good occasions accentuated by excellent food. Congratulations NL and Tofu Delivery King/Ketchup Queen on your engagements and a big thank you to Max for showing exquisite hospitality and excellent food.

Makan Kings ratings = 8.5 out of 10

-BKT King-