Peel Street newcomer 2nd & 6th is still evolving and increasing in its inevitable popularity. A moody but intimate scene is set with dark wood tables, bottle green walls and stunning copper cutlery. Renaissance portraits adorning the wall but the real art is delivered on the plates. 2nd & 6th is named after the sins of Greed and Gluttony both of which we were guilty of on our exquisite visit.
Immediately piquing my interest on the menu is a dish called Tapas of Eggs. A trio of innovative egg dishes, breakfast inspired but available all day – and why not? The first is a twist on eggs benedict. A hollowed out toasted bun filled with an oozing egg and topped with slices of pancetta and hollandaise sauce. The next is a take on a scotch egg, the soft boiled egg encrusted in hazelnut and sesame panko breadcrumbs. The egg sits on a stand of polenta with a tasty tomato chutney centre. Finally a couple of quail eggs are baked on an earthy mushroom duxelle in a copper pot. Modern, inventive and delicious, each tapas has perfectly cooked eggs and pushes the envelope on the familiar.
In the Smoked Ocean Trout ‘Mojito’ Style, bright curls of gravalax, sit atop a parmesan tart shell with a mojito filling. The creamy textured centre has a subtle lime flavour that is enhanced by a bright and zingy lime gel which packs bitterness but has an underlying sweetness. It is magical with the cured fish.
Seared Tuna with Squid Ink Brioche Bun is a house favourite. Delicate cubes of cured tuna have been lightly seared on one side. Presented in a black burger bun with lettuce and Spanish onion it is paired with a ring of fried polenta filled with wok tossed vegetables, colourful and crisp. The high quality tuna is the star of this dish, with an added squeeze of lime juice it melts in the mouth.
East meets West in the Oriental Prawns where Asian spiced pan seared prawns sit atop creamy goats cheese and avocado puree. The juxtaposition of flavours works with the prawn tying it all together. The dish is garnished with sprigs of ice plant, croutons and embellished with pearls of coconut caviar.
As a lover of duck I was excited to see Moroccan Duck Breast on the menu and it did not disappoint. Medjool dates create an earthy, sweet core in the succulent, spiced duck breast served with a sweet date sauce. Again we see the crispy, colourful wok tossed vegetables that form a delicious meal.
Finally the ultimate indulgence Pan Fried Lobster Tail, a Thai inspired orange sauce and spices add subtle heat and additional sweetness to the lobster meat. A shaved fennel salad draws on the orange sauce with the inclusion of fresh and dried orange segments. The classic pairings are proven to please, presented beautifully and delight the palate.
The desserts are just as artful and inspired, most taking on a deconstructed theme. The individual elements just as delicious alone as when eaten together.
2nd & 6th’s version of Peach Melba draws together fresh peaches and raspberries with vanilla panacotta and ice cream. Finished with shards of glass like toffee stained with dehydrated raspberry, the dessert is light and summery. The creamy vanilla flavours are enhanced by the fresh fruit, each bite is a taste of summer.
Forrest Berry Textures combines flavours of blackcurrant, blackberry and blueberry in an inventive combination of sorbet, mousse and gels with meringue and crumb providing texture. The dish showcases the pastry chef’s talent in molecular gastronomy and is as exiting to eat as it looks.
Caramelized White Chocolate Mousse with Coffee, Banana and Passionfruit binds a myriad of flavours in a spherical glass bowl. The silky mousse forms a base for crunchy coffee soil on which sits a ball of creamy banana ice cream topped with passionfruit pulp. This dish presents different texture and flavour combinations that excite and invigorate.
The Morello Cherry Cheesecake was my favourite of the desserts. The lemon flavour in the piped cream cheese ‘filling’ was so vibrant and bursting with citrus. Even more flavourful was the house made graham cracker crumb which was full of gingery warmth. Finished with a morello cherry gel and house made vanilla icecream. I normally steer clear of anything titled morello as I find it tastes like medicine – not in this case. My spoon developed a life of its own and kept dipping itself back into the mixture long after I had pushed the plate aside.
‘Folie’ of Chocolate is a decadent showcase of all things chocolate, again demonstrating technique and skill. Gooey brownie, chocolate fudge sauce, chocolate icecream and tuille finished with meringues and a suculoos crumb. It is everything you want in a chocolaty dessert; rich, indulgent and a little over the top.
With exemplary attention to detail, each dish has elements that elevate them to a sophisticated level, pleasing both the eyes and the palate. I can honestly say I was delighted with each one and with their reasonable price point, well rounded menu and artistic food 2nd & 6th will have you returning many times for more greed and gluttony.
Words by Kate Wilkinson
WHERE: 12 Peel St, Adelaide