Friday, December 6, 2013

Lunch with Karen Martini | Win a Dining Experience @ Mr Wolf

Location: 9–15 Inkerman Street, St Kilda 3182
Phone: (03) 9534 0255
Cuisine: Italian

I don't usually venture out beyond the CBD much, but when Gastrology asked me to join her at a special lunch with celebrity chef Karen Martini, it had to be done.

What a treat! Now I could try to describe the experience, but nothing says it better than this nifty clip put together by The Age.

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All you have to do is Re-tweet The Age's Tweet to the video and hashtag #forevercurious to go in the running to win a dining experience at Mr Wolf or a copy of Karen Martini’s latest cookbook Everyday:

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#forevercurious readers

Let's take a closer look at the wonderful dishes prepared by Karen and introduced to us as we ate.

First up, the appetisers - fresh little bursts of intense flavour.

marinated olives | pickled vegetables

Something warm..., 

calamari fritto | stuffed peppers w/ goats cheese, walnuts and cumin
The calamari was tender on the inside and the batter was light and crispy. This was contrasted with the warmth from the stuffed peppers with a creamy cheesy stuffing interspersed with crunchy walnuts.

prosciutto w/ smashed broad beans, rocket, mint, ricotta
My favourite dish of the day. Salty cured prosciutto draped across a platter of smashed broad beans, rocket, mint and creamy ricotta cheese. Such an amazing combination of flavours and textures!

Next course: Mr Wolf's famous pizza!

Thin and crispy base, fresh toppings, perfectly balanced flavours. Some of the best pizza in town.

Just when we thought the meal was over, out came the main event - slow cooked lamb with horta.

slow cooked lamb shoulder w/ garlic yoghurt | horta

Just look at that lamb! You could smell the smokey aromas as Karen carved up meat and served the table. Slow cooked for hours, the lamb was tender and juicy that just fell apart with a slight touch of the fork. The garlic yoghurt it was served with really hit the spot with a strong bite and creamy texture. This was accompanied by a side called 'horta' - blanched greens, dressed in olive oil, mixed with barley and topped off with barley and toasted almonds. Packed full of flavour and refreshingly cleansing.

And then everyone's favourite course - dessert!

zabaglione w/ blood orange, candied orange
After all that food, I was glad the dessert was fresh and fruity. The zabaglione looked rich, but it was actually light and airy. Beautifully smooth and not too sweet, which was perfect when topped with a sweet and sticky syrup and fresh orange segments. The candied slice of orange had just that perfect mix of 'snap' and chewiness.

Overall, it was a very pleasant (and filling) dining experience. All hosted downstairs in Mr Wolf's private dining room. A perfect place for small functions and special occasions.

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