The team at Republic are at it again with an exciting new Spring menu that will tantalise the tastebuds. Adelaide Food Central, along with other media and bloggers were invited to the “Spring into Republic” media launch to sample some of the dishes they had to offer. All food and drink were provided free of charge.
The Beetroot Carpaccio was the first dish from the list of starters. It is a brilliant dish that would be also perfect for vegetarians. It was simple yet very tasty. The delicate thin slices of beetroot was served with apple salsa verde which was tangy, sweet and very fresh. The goats cheese mousse was also a nice little decadent compliment to the beetroot. It was a nice, light starting dish that got the tastebuds excited for the following dishes.
Next starter was the Smoked Chicken Terrine. I think this would also be a great idea as a light lunch during the warmer weather. The chicken was moist, tender and succulent, well-cooked. When I read on the menu that the terrine would have a mustard grape chutney element I thought it was pretty strange. But the grape actually gelled well together with the mustard as it added a berry rich sweetness to the characteristically heady flavour of the mustard. The crostini was crunchy and lightly flavoured well with salt and pepper and oil.
The scallops were nicely pan fried with a slightly buttery, well-seasoned taste and beautiful golden sear. The sweet corn puree was delicious! It was lovely and peppery with the sweetness originating from the pureed corn.
The first of the mains to come out was with the Duck Duo. The duck was well pan-fried which allowed the duck to be moist, tender and the skin to be very crispy with a lovely brown colour. I really liked the salad underneath a lot as it had pieces of sweet orange segments and the raspberry vinaigrette to tie it together. The presence of fruit in the salad gave it a very vibrant look and taste that is very suitable for the warmer seasons. The fennel itself gave the dish an element of texture. The only one thing I wish there more was the quinoa in the salad although this is just a preference and not a major flaw to the dish. All in all it was a nicely tied together dish with all the elements gelling together very well.
The next main dish was the Berkshire Pork Belly. The thick slices of pork belly were melt-in-your-mouth with an incredible rich flavour. My pork belly had a little bit more fat than some people would prefer but I personally did not mind it. The apple & pigs croquette was golden brown in colour and had a scrumptious crunchy texture. The pigs cheek inside the croquette were cooked well as it was meltingly tender and tasty. The jus sauce itself was full of flavour and had a nice thin and not too thick consistency about it. A perfectly well-balanced dish.
I have not had many experience eating dishes with squid ink elements previously but this dish was a real winner. The spaghetti was cooked to al dente. It had a slightly tasty but yet very mild taste. Perfect for anyone who is trying a black ink dish for the first time. The confit garlic added a serious kick of flavour to the dish. Whereas the confit pangritata (Italian for toasted breadcrumbs) gave the dish a crispy and cheerful texture. I can imagine it having the presence of being to take any ordinary pasta dish onto another level. Personally I liked this dish the most out of all the mains as I was left salivating for more.
The first of the desserts that came out was the Dark Chocolate Mi-Ciut. Mi-Ciut is a French term in which it literally translates to half-cooked or semi-cooked. The chocolate cake was light and airy as there is no use of flour yet the chocolate flavour was still deep and intense. It had a nice thin exterior while in the inside there was the meltingly chocolatey goodness. The richness of the cake itself was balanced out with the refreshing presence of that high-quality vanilla bean ice cream and strawberry compote. Delicious! Highly recommended.
The last of the desserts was the Bomb Alaska. The best part of this dish was that Italian meringue. It was smooth, velvety and really delicious. I just wish there was more of it in the dish as it was so really nice. The raspberry sorbet was light yet had a good amount of a berry concentrated flavour to it. And the white chocolate ice cream was beautifully smooth and indulgent. Although this dessert is a little more sweet than the Dark Chocolate Mi-Ciut and maybe a bit too much for those who do not have a very sweet palette.
I really liked all the dishes off The Republic’s Spring menu. There’s a great combination of well-balanced light and refreshing dishes as well as more robust dishes such as the Berkshire Pork Belly. The wine selection here is great as well with plenty of different red and white wines on offer. After being here a couple of times for events I can see now that it definitely has well truly established itself to be just more than just your everyday pub or a bar. Special thanks to the wonderful staff at The Republic for being extra accommodating and for Girl About Town for putting together yet another spectacular event.
Words by Linh Nguyen
WHERE: 120 Magill Rd, Norwood