I headed down south of Western Australia to Pemberton with a few girlfriends for a weekend away. Today, we decided to make our way to the Wine & Truffle Company for lunch.
Diners will be forgiven for thinking they’ve driven to this truffle farm and vineyard and mysteriously ended up in the green heart of France. Offering a slew of tempting tasty truffle delights, this cafe doesn’t mince its words when it comes to the little nuggets of black gold – almost everything (and I mean everything) on the seasonal menu offers some interpretation of the truffle.
The jewel in the crown is that patrons are invited to go truffle hunting before their precious treasure is used to create sumptuous dishes such as a truffle tasting plate with farm-grown hazelnuts, or a red wine and truffle beef pie.
As an accompaniment, there’s a selection of Truffle Hill wines on offer from the citrus whimsy of a Riesling to the peppery fortitude of a Shiraz-Cabernet-Sauvignon blend.
The weather was a little erratic but there was a slight ray of sunshine perking through the clouds when we arrived at the restaurant. We were ushered to our seats in the enclosed patio of the restaurant.
For entrees, we decided to share the truffle taste plate which had truffle olives, truffle butter, truffle oil, hazelnut dukkah served with toasted Turkish bread. The truffle olives were fantastic, so tangy and sweet at the same time. The toasted Turkish bread melted the truffle butter and tasted so good.
We also shared the pan-seared truffle infused scallops served on a creamy braised leek and truffle. It looked awesome. Due to my pregnancy, I had to skip this dish but the girls told me that they were perfectly cooked and went well with the creamy leek mash with shaved truffle through it as well.
We ordered an array of different mains. Alicia & I had the garlic prawns risotto which was garlic prawns served on a bed of Riesling & truffle risotto & parmesan tuile. I must say, they did not skim on the garlic prawns. There were 8-10 pieces in the risotto. The risotto itself was creamy and a little overcooked and a bit on the mushy side but the flavours on the whole was ok.
Libby had the beef & Shiraz pie where chunks of beef were slow cooked in a rich Shiraz sauce and then baked in a crispy pastry and served with a homemade tomato & apple chutney. Also on the side were steamed seasonal vegetables and truffle mash. The pie pastry was cooked to perfect golden brown and oozed with the rich Shiraz sauce. The beef was also tender and I figure from the empty plate, it must have been good. The sides tasted good too especially the truffle mash.
Simone ordered the lamb shanks which were slowly cooked in a rich tomato, garlic, truffle olives & white wine sauce served on a bed of truffle mash. I think Simone found this dish a little disappointing and I must agree. The meat was not falling off the bone which it should be. It needed to be cooked a lot longer. The sauce itself was nothing special and pretty ordinary. Simone or anyone else could do so much better at home.
Mel’s main was the chicken & porcini mushroom filo which was crispy filo pastry filled with chicken, porcini & field mushroom tossed in a creamy garlic & white wine sauce then topped with truffle infused brie. It is then baked till slightly golden and again served with a side of steamed seasonal vegetables and truffle mash. Mel thoroughly enjoyed so it must be good.
Gabby’s main was one of the specials of the deal which was chicken breast stuffed with truffle infused brie, then pan fried and topped with a creamy garlic & white wine sauce. It looked good too, so creamy and perfectly cooked.
I must make a comment about the service, it is all over the shop. The entrees came out fairly quickly but it was a longer wait for the mains. The waitress that sat us at our seats made a comment that they were short of staff in the front of house and requested for us to bear with them but they were still rather inattentive. It took them ages to sort the bill out and was questioning about our orders, so I think they were rather confused. At what you may ask? I don’t even know, they were the ones who took the orders!
On the whole, 6 ½ for food quality, 6 for atmosphere, 6 for pricing (cost per person approximately $40 including a couple of bottles of wine) and 6 for service.
The Wine & Truffle Company
7 Day Road
Tel: 9777 2474