Living in a small town has its benefits and word spreads quickly about people with an interest in food. I was contacted by the local ‘gourmet’ club’s leader (lower case and inverted commas because it is not an official club with office bearers and constitution etc) rang me to invite us to a dinner at a restaurant but due to a chef’s untimely departure the group had to go elsewhere – to the White Sands Resort half way down the highway toward Bicheno.
Its location is known as Iron House Point and it gives its name to the beer brewed on site.
We were offered a beer tasting before our meal so without trepidation I joined in the spirit. We gathered at the small bar area in full sight of some of the resorts guests in the dining room. We could see another more appealing incomplete building next door that will possibly replace the restaurant. I suspect it is behind schedule as the brochure on the resort advertised it to be ready in 2009. I actually expected we would have the tasting in the brewery and with the group standing in a tight space it was not conducive to fully appreciating the beer tasting. Management should be thinking this aspect of promoting and selling the beers to people who are actually on the property more thoroughly.
The meal portions were huge and from what I could see around our two long tables, well received. However there was a substantial delay in receiving our meals. Too be absolutely fair, slow service was not entirely the fault of the two young chefs, whom I spied through the pass working flat-out, but I do blame the manager whoever that is, no sight of one. Had a manager been present to oversee such a large group, complimentary bread could have been sent out to allay the hunger of those who chose only a main course. Surely a crowd of 40 calling themselves a ‘gourmet group’ would have warranted more service and the on site attention of a manager.
Everyone liked the food, but the nonsensical idea of presenting a large fillet steak on top of a tart needs to be reviewed by the chef. It looked silly and pushes the tart filling down, you still have to remove it to eat both the steak and the tart. I had the pork belly and scallops, a bargain if ever there was one, a meal for two really. Do Tasmanian’s really expect this much food in a course?
The resort comprises a series of self-contained semi-detached units with very large decks opening out from the living area. I plan a return for another meal and beer tasting when the new building is completed. Roz