The most magnificent lunch!

My partner and I experienced the most magnificent lunch at the upstairs restaurant last Sunday, a special occasion for my 63rd birthday. From the moment we were met at the front desk, being addressed by our first names and a birthday greeting to me set everything off on the right foot. The handwritten note from our lovely waitress was another special touch that is sadly lacking in modern restaurant experiences these days.

Whilst we didn’t have a window table, the scene overlooking Little Beach from our central table was more than adequate, especially given the weather was playing its part and the loads of sunshine adding to the relaxed ambience. The menu was expertly explained and made the choice of entrée, mains and dessert that much easier for both of us.

I had the prawn and smoked salmon entrée while my partner went for the usual choice (for her) of salt and wild pepper calamari. Both dishes were sublime and probably the best of their type we have tasted. For mains, we both settled on the barramundi on a bed of eggplant ravioli and broccolini. The fish was cooked to perfection and literally fell apart on the fork, while the ravioli (supplied by a local pasta specialist) was the real surprise. So intrigued by it were we that we tracked the outlet down on our way home and made a mental note to explore their offerings in greater detail.

Each time the waitress approached our table with food or drink, we were both addressed by name, and this was done for all guests I observed. So what? Well, at the very least it acknowledges the fact that a guest dining at the Little Beach Boathouse is not just someone eating their food and drinking their drinks, but someone who chooses to be there when there are other restaurants around town. It also suggests an elevated level of staff training, professionalism and attention to detail that is rare. Well done to whomever is responsible for this!

When it comes to chocolate-based desserts, I find it difficult to go past them on a menu without saying yes. My psychiatrist said I shouldn’t fight the urge too often, so I don’t. However, all the three options for desserts sounded equally yummy, so we went for the shared platter for two.

A good choice, especially when the platter arrived with a lit sparkler fizzing away and some more birthday wishes.

The passionfruit tart with strawberries and meringue was probably my least favoured of the three on the menu, but wow, what a surprise awaits. The sticky date pudding with caramelised walnuts and butterscotch sauce and caramel ice cream was fought over savagely, but the dark chocolate delice with white chocolate sauce and ice cream (which I cunningly tried to keep until last of the three) eclipsed everything before it. My psychiatrist would have been proud of me….

Halfway through the meal, our waitress somehow made a window table available for us, and that was the final touch that was unexpected and most welcomed. And the mocha I had along with dessert was the best I have had for a long time.

So, was everything perfection? Well, no. The side of chunky chips we ordered with the mains didn’t arrive for whatever reason, but as it turned out, neither of us could have enjoyed the dessert platter as much as we did if the chips had been lurking there on the table (they wouldn’t have lurked there for long, if past eating patterns had been repeated).

At $80 for three courses per person, given the quality of the food and preparation with all the attendant additional experiences provided by the staff and the setting overlooking the beach, I have to conclude it is exceptional value for money.

Thank you to all involved, especially my partner for the suggestion!