Yes, I am well aware that we are almost at the end of November, and Sydney's Good Food Month has long past, but this post just had to be published.
why you ask?
Asides this being the only Hat's Off dinner event I made it to this year, this Momofuku dinner was a rare chance to not have the degustation and instead sample the much coveted 2007 Momofuku Ssäm Bar menu without flying to New York
and also it was absolutely jaw dropping meal. If I had to describe this meal, it would sound something like this:
"That cow must of come from heaven!"
In fact, we may have said that out loud, leading to looks of concern from our neighbouring diners.
But read on, and you'll understand. (It's ok if you don't, my jar of Nutella understands)
Hand modelling the pork bun
Unlike the original Momfuku Seiōbo degustation, there is no need to camp out in front of your computer to snap up a reservation, instead you are expected to camp outside the premises 90 minutes before opening time (6:30pm) as it is a walk in only policy.
(FYI we weren't the first in line.)
The menu on offer is surprisingly vast, with a great selection of small and larger main size dishes.
Since there were only 2 of us, we could only sample a small selection of what they had on offer.
The chefs working their magic
Once inside, we were lead to the bar tables, (best tables for spying on all the chefs and kitchen action!). The flow of the chefs at work was to the likes of sychronised swimming, no bangins pots, yelling orders or kitchen dramas (Sorry, no Gordon Ramsey here), just seamless movements and delicious smelling aromas wafting our way.
Steamed Buns- pork belly, hoisin,cucumber, scallion
One does not simply visit Momofuku and not order pork buns.
I don't think one can ever wax lyrical about these enough buns, and if you haven't had them yet (You have be unfriended until you have had one!), think soft fluffy buns with melt in your mouth slices of pork belly and cucumber and scallion to cut through the meatiness. They are so delicious I could easily eat a dozen of these myself.
Spicy Honeycomb Tripe
Not many people will go need tripe with a 10 foot pole, and it wasn't until recently that I discovered that tripe is actually pretty tasty.(Just don't think of which part of the cow it belongs to!)
Tripe is definitely one of those dishes where the flavour and cooking time needs to be spot on to create a superb dish and that was exactly what Ben Greeno and team executed. Tender bites of tripe coated in a delciously spicy sauce. one eord. whoa!
adding egg porn to the tripe
And when you add egg porn to a fantastic dish, you literally food coma on the spot. *insert heavy breathing* (Yes you, Irene!)
Korean Rice Cakes w/ pork sausage, kale & kimchi
Next up was the Korean rice cakes, or better known as tteokbooki. These spicy chewy nubbins of goodness were definitely not your average street side vendor quality. It may look and sound like an average korean dish to you, but boy it was jam packed with flavour, i was especially pleased with the kim chi to rice cake ratio whilst the use of kale provided a nice bite and flavour compared to the normal white cabbage.
Marinated Hanger Steak ssam w. ginger scallion, kimchi and bibb lettuce
And if we could all have a minute of silence for this cow.
Hanger steak is considered a prize cut, generally a cut the butchers save for themselves. Not only is it a cut prized for texture, it is also regarded as one of the most flavoursome cuts too.
We had heard people raving about the hanger steak at Momofuku so we salivating seeing it being served to our neighbouring diners. Served medium rare, it sure did not disappoint. The meat was incredibly tender and juicy, and may have been the best piece of steak I’ve had to date. Not kidding you one bit.
The cow from Heaven.
The steak was served with some deliciously tangy kimchi and ginger scallion. The idea behind it is sort of like a lettuce cup, but definitely with a gourmet touch to it.
I polished off a couple of pieces of this ridiculously tasty beef without the condiments just for good measure and boy would this steak would do the entire cow population proud!
Tello's Chawan mushi w/ black truffle, snails, edamame & scallions
Many say that chawan mushi is a hard dish to master and can tell you a lot about the restaurant and chef. Whilst steaming egg custard sounds easy, I have to agree to the above statement. To get an egg custard perfectly wobbly, the timing is crucial. Thanks to Tello (whoever you may be), this chawan mushi was amazingly silky and wobbly, with a strong but not overwhelming egginess, but it was the truffle that stole the show, although pungent, it was devoured in 10 seconds flat. Definitely a dish that is underrepresented by its appearance.
Pan-roasted Skate- brown butter preserved lemon
The last dish we sampled was the Pan-roasted skate. Whilst this was a delicously cooked piece of fish, the brown butter and preserved lemon didn't really allow it to shine through on Momofuku standards. This was the only underwhelming dish we had all evening.
If other reincarnations of other momofuku joints ever appear in Sydney again, I will definitely be making an appearance or i could start saving now for a trip to Big Apple to sample Momofuku's goodness. (logic right?)
Just like that, October Good food month came and went, due to work and exam comittments, The only other event I made it to was the night noodles markets (I'm sure you have all read about it!). I will definitely plan my time better next year and check out more of the offerings, but for now, I have some serious saving to do.
So to those more proactive, what was your favourite event of good foo month? Let me know in the comments below.
Last but not least, Congratulations to Yvonne Tee on winning the Lucky Smart Snax Giveaway! Contact me for more details on how to collect your prize!