I tried two new things at No. 4 Blake Street, French food and a full degustation. I’m a bit of a fussy eater and although I do try my best to keep an open mind, my mind is sometimes stronger than the taste buds, which means I tend to avoid strict set menus.
The same Tom of Tom’s Kitchen, Tom Randolph, is the mastermind & head chef behind No. 4 Blake Street. Tom runs a tight ship at Tom’s Kitchen and the staff there are lovely, my latte is always ready in just a couple of minutes which means I can get my second coffee fix before starting the working day The friendly experience is what I’ve become used to at Tom’s Kitchen and No4 Blake Street was no different. Madjouline and Romain who run the front of house and Tom of course, were lovely hosts.
Along with other fellow Perth bloggers and media, we were invited by No4 Blake Street to a theatre of dining which indicated we needed to allow 2 – 3 hours for dinner. I wasn’t sure what to expect other than red curtains and a theatrical play on food
On entry, we were offered a glass of Cava Mas Pere Brut which was light & refreshing. We were then taken by Romain on a guided tour of the restaurant. The dining area is beautifully decked out with wooden finishings and many bottles of fine wine…
Romain then proudly showed us through to the back of the restaurant where No4 Blake Street grow their own micro herbs. You will see these gorgeous micro herbs featured throughout our degustation to follow…
The presentation of everything at No4 Blake Street from the decor to the food was beautiful and I had the pleasure of sharing my first French degustation experience with fellow food bloggers The Perth Food Engineers, Sprinkling of Spice, The Food Pornographer, Perth Food Journal and Perth Munchkin.
Once seated we were offered the choice of home-made white sourdough or olive bread, I don’t eat olives and I love sourdough so it was an easy decision. My sourdough was warm and fresh…
To compliment the bread, we were served different flavoured butters – Olive, Pedro Ximenez (sherry) and Orange which I thought was cool as you don’t usually get flavoured butters. The Pedro was by far the most popular amongst the table – Miss Anise of Perth Food Engineers who loves her sherry was very excited. The orange butter tasted a bit like the orange zest in hot cross buns and the olive butter tasted like olives
Romain tells us over a month they tasted 50 wines to come up with the perfect wine list to match their 4 and 6 course degustations.
To match our degustation, we were offered the choice of Rockford “Local Growers”, Semillon 2002, Barossa Valley or the D’Arenburg, The “Laughing Magpie” Shiraz Viognier 2004, McLaren Vale. I prefer red wine with my meals so I had the shiraz the whole evening. It was beautifully smooth with fruity notes, a wonderful result of being decanted for 5 hours which brought out the flavours.
To allow us to try as much of the full degustation as possible, No4 Blake Street provided alternating dishes. I had the goats cheese gnocchi served with aromatic oils, baby herbs and borage blossom in tomato water – this was my favourite. The gnocchi was fluffy, silky smooth and had a strong cheese flavour. It was at No4 Blake Street that I decided I like goat cheese, the creaminess just wins me over. The tomato water was like broth and had a strong tomato tang to it – you have to love tomato to like this dish. We were told cherry tomatoes are squished in cloth for 12 hours to bring out the juices (there’s probably a more technical cooking term for this but this is my understanding of the process ;)).
My bro and others on our table had the rabbit parfait, belly presse, loin and kidney terrine, gingerbread tuile with pomegranate…
My bro thought the rabbit tasted like bacon and the terrine was as fluffy as mousse. He thought the sausage was salty and best eaten with the rabbit. Miss Egg from the Perth Food Engineers described the rabbit like “Tony Roma ribs” this was a winner amongst the table.
We were then served this interesting mix of Summer corn custard, truffled popcorn, pickled shimeji, porcini foam and mushroom glass. I don’t usually like mushroom but I thought this was a really nice combination with a good balance of sweet and savoury flavours.
If you’ve been following my blog you’ll know that my tummy churns when I can visualise what I’m eating. So it was a good thing that I didn’t realise what sweet bread was. It wasn’t until I had polished off my dish that my bro asked me if I knew what sweet bread was, being my first time eating French food, I had no idea so when I found out it was in fact thyroid glands I was in a slight shock. However, being a part of burger boy’s Italian family, I know good pasta and sauce when I have it and I appreciated this dish for the Al Dente tortellini and the champagne cream sauce was just divine. I thought the sweet bread and orange zest filling tasted similar to beef ravioli.
Everyone loved the barely cooked ocean trout, ink rice cracker, miso, cuttlefish and compressed cucumber…
I like my seafood (and meats) cooked through so I swapped my ocean trout with my bro and had the glazed pork, white eggplant caviar, mustard, cassis and eggplant crisp. I am fussy with my pork so I would have preferred a more tender cut of pork…
Miss Egg of The Perth Food Engineers had the seared duck breast, pencil leeks, poached plum, celery leaves which she enjoyed…
The palate cleanser was a coconut sorbet, pineapple granita, compressed apple, coriander jelly and coconut foam on a bed of sesame soil. It was light and refreshing after the main course.
For dessert I had the Textures of Passionfruit which was a white basil ganache with mango, salted sesame and coconut sago. It tasted like an Asian dessert I loved the sago and salted sesame. I don’t think this photo does this dessert justice!
We were all super impressed with this Cherry and Chocolate Garden, it looked too real to be eaten
The chocolate and cherry garden had chocolate mousse, salted peanut, dacquoise and cherry. My bro thought the “dirt” tasted a bit like milo
Wow, No. 4 Blake Street pleasantly broke all my foodie barriers, admittedly a tough food challenge for me. My bro who came along as my guest was thoroughly amused when I polished off every bit of my sweet bread tortellini. I thought the service was wonderful as was the wine, I loved the thought & care behind everything that was presented to us on our plate. This was my first introduction to French food and a full degustation, my last one was at Amuse for dessert last year which I loved as I eat most desserts all except anything with banana in it.
No. 4 Blake Street is open for breakfast/brunch, high tea and dinner (degustation) everyday.
- High Tea menu starts from $42 and there’s a choice of savoury fingers and sweet & pastries
- Degustations: 4 courses without dessert $70 with matching wine $100; 6 courses with dessert $90 with matching wine $135
I will be back to No. 4 Blake Street for their sweet & pastries high tea menu and brunch soon. As for the degustation, it will just depend on what’s on the menu.