Origin Dining is nestled in the heart of the quiet suburb of Willoughby, serving modern Australian dishes, some with an Asian twist. The restaurant is narrow and cosy, with only a counter separating you from the delicious sights and smells of the chef's kitchen.
The lime green interior was a pleasant contrast to the terrible weather that evening, the atmosphere was laid back and relaxing.
Both my boyfriend and I shared the fried egg salad with eggplant, green onion, chilli and squid vinaigrette. The dish was big enough to be a main but was absolutely divine. The squid was cooked to perfection, it wasn't chewy or tough and the flavours of the eggplant, chilli and egg worked beautifully together.
Prawns poached in coconut milk, served with a papaya and chilli salad
Next, from the specials board, I chose prawns poached in coconut milk, served with a papaya and chilli salad. Another salad dish I know, but I was intrigued to find out how the papaya and coconut would taste together. The salad was refreshing, with a good balance of coconut milk which wasn't over-powering however, it could have been even better, had it been served with a few more prawns.
My boyfriend opted for the more traditional roasted half chicken with potato Lyonnaise, speck and parsley, which he adored and reminded him of an English roast dinner.
Our favourite course of the night was dessert, another from the specials board: velvety chocolate mousse with hazelnut crumb, figs and strawberries. This dish brought me back to my childhood; I loved the combination of chocolate, crunchy hazelnut and the delicate flavour of the figs. The strawberries just added a new dimension to the exceptional dish. My mouth was extremely happy!
The service was very prompt with just a little wait in between meals. The restaurant was quite busy so it is best to book a table. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner- with a larger menu for lunch but a range of specials is available throughout the day. Origin Dining also serves a selection of tea, coffee and soft drinks. But for something alcoholic, BYO is your only option with corkage charged at $2.50 per person.