Artespresso in Kingston

18 Jan

Artespressois found in the Kingston dining precinct. I’ll state from the outset that I’m generally not a fan of the area – everyone bangs on about how many options there are, but it

Goat's cheese terrine (sorry for mobile photos)

doesn’t hide the fact that it is just a wide variety of mediocre. Artespresso seems to have bucked that trend, with it by all accounts seeming to be very trendy and came with a few good recommendations.

We arrived at about 7.30 and were seated straight away. The venue was busy but they still managed to seat us away from other patrons. Their menu is probably the perfect length and the waiter was skilful – chatty and welcoming without being overbearing.

We shared an entrée each, with Boyfriend ordering the Goats Cheese Terrine (roasted vegetables, goats cheese, avocado puree, capsicum oil, watercress) ($17) and me the Mushrooms (macadamia, cream cheese, honey filled, tomato sugo, fresh herbs, rocket, shaved parmesan) ($17). The Goats Cheese Terrine was lovely – a big size, and great flavours – and plenty for both Boyfriend and I to share. The mushrooms were also very tasty but rather small and just three.

For mains, Boyfriend had the Poulet Ballontine (chicken breast, leek and pistachio farce, prosciutto, cherry gel, jus gras) ($29). The chicken breast was very large, but there was little else offered on the plate. I believe it was supposed to be stuffed with prosciutto, but the size of the meat meant the stuffing looked more like a dot of prosciutto. The result was a rather tasteless piece of plain chicken (but a big amount of protein!).

Chicken (I was too distracted by my dish to take a photo)

I ordered the Spaghetti Pescatore (blue swimmer crab, tomato concasse, baby capers, anchovies, chillies, fresh herbs) ($27). I am no restaurant or dining out expert, and perhaps it was pretty foolish or plebeian for me to think that a dish described as Pescatore would have the crab out of the shell. I ordered it thinking that the crab would perhaps be stirred through the pasta at the last minute – which in my mind would be delicious. Instead, a crab cracker was placed next to me and the dish arrived with the spaghetti and crab’s legs which I had to crack open and dig out the meat. The crab was divine, but it was difficult to enjoy it together with the very tasty spaghetti. Maybe this is exactly how it should work, but it was very different from what I had in mind. The result was that I shovelled the spaghetti into my mouth, attempted to dig out as much crab as possible, and getting my fingers coated in both crab and spaghetti sauce. I am not graceful at the best of times…

Perhaps this is how it’s done and what I should have expected. (Or, more likely, perhaps I ate it completely wrong!) Regardless, the offering was small (and that was the main, not the entree size). We left the restaurant hungry, and bought Magnums from the servo on the way home to compensate.

While the entrees were excellent, the mains were really a disappointment, and for that reason I don’t think we’d go back—at least, not for dinner. It did make us wonder if maybe all the good reviews we’d heard were for their breakfasts!

Date: Friday, 13 January

Attendees: T1 and Boyfriend

Cost: $107 for two ($90 for two mains and two entrees, plus a glass of wine each)

Worthwhile factor: Not worthwhile (for dinner)

Want more? http://www.artespresso.com.au/

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One Response to “Artespresso in Kingston”

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  1. Madam Woo, I do love you « In The Taratory - January 25, 2012

    […] written elsewhere that I think the restaurant ‘precinct’ of Kingston leaves a lot to desire, with it […]

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