"Degustation is a culinary term meaning "a careful, appreciative tasting of various foods" and focusing on the gustatory system, the senses, high culinary art and good company." - Wikipedia
For some people, degustation is the best way to dine out. It's an opportunity to sample a wide variety of menu items, without needing another notch in your belt once you're done. Degustation dinners do come with a downside, they're rarely the cheapest way to dine, so for many people they come round once in a blue moon. Let us know your favourite degustation venue, so we can try and find Adelaide's best.
Recently Celcius has been the talk of the town when it comes to degustation. Not only is this a dinner destination, but their $50 lunch special degustation menu has become a popular choice. They're only open for lunch on a Friday, and for dinner Tuesday to Saturday. If you're dining at night you can choose from the 5 or 8 course degustations. There menu is drool-worthy, with dishes like 'Berkshire suckling pig, boudin noir, calamari, carrot, garlic' or 'yoghurt, pistachio, rose water, sumac'. It's all about the different foods, flavours, and textures coming together.
Press Food & Wine are another city location, and their tasting menu also offers a great sampling of the menu. Instead of a structured degustation menu, theirs is a little more fluid. Leave your tastebuds in the hands of the chef, and let them choose your meals for the day, or pick out a few menu items that intrigue you the most. The Press menu is very eclectic, so if you feel like trying offal you can add some to your selection, but if brains and tongue make you queazy you can make sure they're omitted.
It's worth keeping your eyes peeled to Stewart Wessen's Twitter account to get yourself a set at the next event by Culinetic. Currently their dinners are held on the Skydeck at the Pinnacle on Pirrie but they're looking to expand to other venues around the city. It's an opportunity to meet new people, and connect over food, but it's also about delicious meals and creative concepts. Cole Thomas, head at Culinetic, is famous for levitating food so you can always expect something interesting. There's an air of secrecy surrounding their degustation dinners, but if you do get a spot on the long table it's well worth it.
One last one to add to the list probably wouldn't be considered Adelaide's best, but it is an interesting concept. Devour Dessert Bar have a tasting menu that lets you sample a special selection of desserts. They take you on a journey of flavours, and manage to do some very creative things with dessert. You're probably best trying this one after a very light dinner.
What other degustations have you tried? Have you had a truly memorable experience, and do you think they're worth the extra cash?
Absolutely agree and usually very good value if you like trying different things without having a licked spoon from another guest edging towards your plate.
D'Arrys at D'Arenbergs winery is lovely and they change with seasons. LE Marquis was a very nice dinner but almost closer to a set menu and I notice that in December its still listed as the meal we thought appropriate for and enjoyed in winter.
Auge's is a bit over the top; some of the dishes were good, overly trendy, dreadfully trendy china which launched my flatware onto the floor as though from a ski-jump
The Pot in Unley was good, sort of rustic, I think they carried rustic too far when they came out with 3 diffferent desserts and 3 spoons for the 3 of us to share. There is rustic, and then there is 3rd world.
Andres Cucina is excelent; trust them and go for the kitchen menu. Great food & great value
Um, am I on a roll here....