Food adventure @ duNord
Despite spending a good portion of the past three years eating my way through Melbourne, my first experience with Nordic cuisine only just took place a few weeks ago, with an invite to a bloggers dinner at duNord. I would like to thank duNord and Lynda Buckley Communications for the opportunity to attend.
Rose Hip & Apricot Collins - vodka, rose hip, apricot liquor, citrus and sugar, topped with ginger ale.
I had heard many marvellous things about duNord’s drink concoctions and our welcome cocktail lived up to said tasty standard. I had braced myself for that hit of vodka, but it never came, instead blending into the tasty backdrop of zingy, citrusy sweetness provided by the other components. Welcoming indeed.
Salt & Vinegar Branches.
Head chef Matt Fallon and his appetizing masterpiece.
Our appetizers were truly a sight to behold, served in a form that made itself right at home as the table’s centrepiece. The edible arrangement was made up of salted Danish root beer and dark rye branches, yellow sorrel flowers, salt bush and a dill cream. The pairing of the pretzel-textured, salty bread sticks and sour tang of the sorrel culminated in a salt and vinegar-esque flavouring. The dill cream was unfortunately quite difficult to reach without the branches snapping in the process.
Ocean trout, linseed & buttermilk.
The refreshing and natural flavours of the silky, tender ocean trout was highlighted by the champagne presence in its curing mix and contrast of the peppery nuttiness of the linseed cracker. The entree was gorgeously light, and left our taste buds craving for more.
Smoked herring, potato, pork skin and foraged puree.
I hate ordering fish dishes that have a lot of pesky little bones, but I could overlook the presence of bones in a dish like this. The herring was coated in a crunchy and textured, crackle-like pork skin mixture that brought much aromatic flavouring. The fish was thankfully not too overpowering. Even more palate blowing was the silky potato mash and foraged puree that sported a delightful hint of truffle fragrance.
Duck & bacon pyttipanna, with onion and rose hip.
The flavoursome blend of tender duck, bacon and crisp veggies formed a stir fry-like dish. The oozy egg yolk worked very well with the meats. It might not have looked it given the large slices of cabbage that jazzed up its appearance, but the dish came across as quite homey and comforting. Call me Asian, but I would have happily eaten this dish with a bowl of rice on the side!
Beetroot panna cotta.
One of the very few ways you could convince me to eat beetroot would be to stick it in a dessert. But while the first few bites were okay, the mild-at-first beetroot flavour did eventually build to the point where I had to throw in the towel. Or rather, fork. I found comfort in the distraction provided by the creamy richness of the sorbet and sherbet-like powder. For those at the table who didn’t mind the taste of beetroot, this was a dish that ended their evening on a really high note.
Following our meal, we participated in a competition where we were each presented with a smear and instructed to pretty up the plate.
I don’t know how it happened, but I managed to score myself a dining voucher with my plating efforts. Given the highlights encountered with many of the dishes, I’m looking forward to my return visit!
duNord offers a culinary experience that’s quite different to anything else I have previously experienced in Melbourne. They employ many traditional nordic cooking techniques, resulting in dishes that showcase authentic flavours while using the best of local produce. Definitely worth visiting for both the drink aficionados and foodies.
367 Little Bourke St,
Melbourne, Victoria, 3000.
(03) 9642 0052