The dining room is a regular rectangular shaped room and reminiscent of a hotel dining room at one of the big chain 4 star hotels. Again not unpleasant but somewhat sterile. So will the food provide us with the unique experience we seek?
The amuse bouche arrived and it was a Dry Broadbean Soup with Cayenne Pepper with a
Mushroom Filled Borek. The mushroom pastry was delicious - flaky pastry with a creamy mushroom filling was chunky enough to add some texture. The soup left a dry feeling in the mouth so its name was certainly fitting. I'm not sure of the techniques involved in getting a soup to have a dry texture but whatever was done must have worked and it was certainly unusual and memorable. However the flavour of it was quite bland and it lacked the depth and savouriness that I've tasted in other soup amuse bouche.
I think that to have something as simple as soup as a course, it really needs a strong and concentrated stock that has been home made and lovingly brewed up with layers of flavour and this soup lacked that body and depth.
Steve went with Roasted Pigeon, Crab Bastilla, White Cabbage, Date Sauce. Now that I'm asking him about it almost 3 weeks later, he is struggling to recall it which probably says a lot. Oh and now I've jogged his memory, he says he remembers it being tasty so that's good. We did agree on the night that his choice was better in terms of bigger and bolder flavours.
I had the Roasted Lamb 3 Ways, with Cinnamon and Chermoula. The waiter told me there was leg of lamb, braised lamb shoulder and lamb fillet but that wasn't quite the case. I actually received a lamb cutlet which he didn't mention, some leg of lamb and maybe some shoulder but it wasn't actually braised. Well not my interpretation of braised, roasted maybe but not braised.
Anyway semantics aside. As well as the lamb was a lovely triangle "samosa" of spinach and cheese like the Greek spanakopita and that was delicious. Given my previous thoughts of lacking flavour and seasoning, this very simple pastry was beautifully seasoned so that the natural flavours of spinach and creamy mozzarella type cheese were enhanced. The lamb itself was also delicious and the spices gave it a beautiful perfume that was Middle Eastern inspired.
The donuts also were plump and fluffy and warm and sugary and pillowy and non greasy and just delightful! I didn't need the accompaniments and in fact.not being a prune fan anyway was happy with just the donuts. I don't really know what made them Morrocan but whatever it is, I like it!
We enjoyed our little visit at the Flinders Hotel. Dinner started off average but blossomed and the time away from the city was exactly what we needed. Welcome respite in a busy life.