Posts Categorized: Ripponlea

Attica’s Shewry evolves again

Cam Whiteoak on test tube: Attica, 74 Glen Eira Road, Ripponlea +61 3 9530 0111. Check out the full Attica photo set here Moan. It’s the room. Reviewers keep deducting points for the room at Attica. True, it is plain. But look at it this way, chef Ben Shewry gets to do what he does at an affordable price because they haven’t paid some A-list restaurant designer to completely redo the place. Personally, I don’t mind the room. What we are talking about here is food that is 18 or even 19 points. But as a restaurant as a whole it scores 17.5, according to the latest review from Larissa Dubecki. And now Sydney diners will get the chance to test Shewry’s food at in a different room on September 14. Of course, I am biased. I’ve been to Attica so often on my own shilling – as well as a couple of freebee media dinners – that I have got to know Ben and Cam well. Oh yeah, and we got truffle on that potato dish. Over the past couple of years I’ve been lucky enough to follow Ben’s development as a chef. Like artists, a test of a chef’s talent is how his food evolves. You can’t stand still. At Attica there is constant progress with changing equipment, technique and ingredients, especially the ingredients which are now 99 per cent local, original and in some cases foraged. His dedication to the art is such that even the butter is made in-house. The food is not only a experience in ingredients but inspiration from his childhood, aroma, texture and temperature and serving. But not too much; it won’t freak you out. The extremes Shewry is now going to, to develop his unique style outside the influences of other chefs include rarely eating out at other restaurants, avoiding cookbooks and attempting not to be typecast by any one dish such as his famous “smoked trout broth, crackling, basil seeds, fresh smoke”. I should probably add that it’s probably time that everybody forgets everything you read about Attica and Thai influences. These date back to 2005 and the fact that Ben spent a month working in the kitchen of David Thomson’s Nahm in London in 2002. He’s come a long, long way since then. Even since last year he has stopped cooking sous vide. And although Food & Wine in the… Read more »

Attica is an absolute stunner

I’m busy so I’m keeping this short and sweet. Attica (74 Glen Eira Rd, Ripponlea +61 9530 0111) is an absolute stunner. When I compare what I ate there on the Tuesday Chef’s Table night to all the meals I’ve eaten this year it is right up there with the best and I should image up for an upgrading in the upcoming Good Food Guide. What they serve on Tuesday is an ever changing degustation. The chef’s table five courses for $60 and each one a hit, which is a change from some degustation menus were there are often a few misses. The idea of chef Ben Shewry, who worked at Circa The Prince and is influenced by the Middle East and Thai guru David Thompson, is to offer seasonal produce and innovative combinations. Creamed salt cod on grilled potato flat bread. Shellfish broth with crystal bay prawns and shaved squid Globe artichokes braised in oloroso sherry with mint, dill and crispy pastry Poached blue eye cod, smoked tomato, kinkwooka mussels, riviera olives Goats curd and hazlenut cheesecake, green apple sorbet, candied rosemary