As far as the Good Food Month Let’s Do Dessert series goes, this is the best. Not mincing words here – this particular dessert even managed to push aside my bias towards Flying Fish which was, up till now, my favourite of 2014 (and 2013). Then again, if any restaurant was going to steal Flying Fish’s thunder, it would be Ananas Bar and Brasserie.
Ananas, being less than two years old, has already picked up a chef’s hat, and in my humble opinion is one of Sydney’s best French restaurants. That their dessert offering took the crown this year could almost be thought of as expected.
You’ve already seen the cover picture, so you know what the dessert’s about, let’s take a walk through the pineapple brasserie’s offering, shall we?
Date Last Visited: 30/10/14
Address: 18 Argyle St The Rocks, NSW 2000
Booking Required: Yes
I’m just going to bring it up now to avoid things become awkward later – the night I visited Ananas Brasserie (30 October 2014) is the last night they offered their Let’s Do Dessert. Yes, Good Food Month is essentially over (though if you’re reading this and the date is 31 October, there are still a few options left!).
I really should have had Ananas first – everyone should have the opportunity to try it and I’m somewhat sad that not more people have. On the plus side, their regular desserts as part of their dinner menu are equally amazing – the restaurant has a reputation for putting out some remarkable sweets.
When you don’t have quality, win them with quantity. That statement doesn’t apply here – quantity and quality are both part of the package here. Head pastry chef Yves Scherrer knows what he’s doing.
Eat the exploding chocolate forest in one go – otherwise you’ll be walking around with it on your shirt. A very delicate outer layer of chocolate encapsulates a black forest chocolate liquid on the inside. That’s the “explosion” and it sports an intense mouthfeel. The flavours are indeed reminiscent of black forest cake, though given the textural difference it may be a bit challenging to reconcile the two.
A deliciously fun way to start!
The mango passion & coconut entremet is a multi-layered mousse cake that is light on the palate but rich in complexity. To break down that buzzphrase – it’s a coconut and mango mousse cake. Deceptively simple in description, decidedly amazing in execution and taste.
I’m not usually a big cake fan – they’re usually either too sweet or too heavy/rich. This was on point. The extra touches of dessicated coconut adds a nice textural element to it.
Eclairs aren’t everyone’s game, but the earl grey & rose eclair continued Ananas’ winning streak. It’s creamy but not heavy, sweet and smoky but not overly so. Ananas is well known for their eclairs, so that this was a prime example of one meets lofty expectations.
Note: the menu says it’s a banoffee pie eclair, but I’m pretty sure it was earl gray instead. Trust – banoffee has a very different flavour profile.
Last but not least, we have the triple chocolate fantasy tart. Fortunately, this sweet thing is all real. There’s a “cookie crumble” base which delivers all of the required crunchiness. This is followed by dollops of chocolate mousse which is edged out with a sour note, provided by a lemon (gel?). The most striking component – the ultra-thin disc of tempered chocolate rounds off the tart. A classic don’t-fix-what-ain’t-broke combination of crumbly texture with extremely smooth chocolate.
Ananas, I’m sorry – I’ll never forget about you again. You’re first on my list in 2015 and deservedly so!
What was your favourite Let’s Do Dessert of 2014? I would love to know in the comments below!