The degustation: probably the only time it’s socially acceptable to eat up to 12 courses in public.
And while the degustation changes from place to place, it basically involves small but sensational sample plates from each course on the menu, allowing you try a little bit of everything. Did someone say, foodie utopia?
Sometimes said degustation is offered as a “Chef’s Selection”, where you leave your dinner’s fate in the hands of the expertly trained and talented chefs, or if you’re not that brave, pick each course yourself. And if you’re lucky, there’s even a glass of wine to match each course; which will generally result in you leaving with a distinct sway in your step.
Ready to feast? In no particular order, check out our pick of the best degustation restaurants on the Gold Coast.
When every single item on Ten’s menu looks mouth-wateringly divine, it can be exceptionally tricky to decide how you’re going to play it. With the five course degustation, choose one item from each course at the beginning of your meal, then sit back and relax as each beautifully prepared and presented course is delivered like clockwork. With some of the best service and expertise from the chefs, bar, and wait staff on the entire Gold Coast, you’ll leave smiling and seriously satisfied.
Must include: Alaskan king crab and Matcha ice cream dessert
Where: 2669 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach
If you’re heading to Palazzo Versace’s Vanitas for dinner, there’s no other way to go than with the signature degustation. A series of delicate dishes selected with precision and purpose, Vanitas’ degustation will take your taste buds on a journey they’ve never encountered before. Everything balances perfectly, from the feature ingredient of each dish to the supplementary ingredients within these, each one containing multiple flavours which all need to be in each mouthful you take (displaying your best manners, of course!). And if you’re getting the degustation, you must choose one of the wine collections to top it off; ‘cause it’s a journey in itself.
Wait for: The Lamb—slow-roasted saddle, braised neck, spring green garnish, lemon balm, and smoked eggplant puree (are you picking up what we’re putting down?!)
Where: Palazzo Versace Hotel, Seaworld Drive, Main Beach
Guys, you know that never ending battle you have with your girl, where you say “What do you want for dinner?” and she either replies with “I don’t know,” or “I don’t care,” leaving you frustrated and under pressure? Well, at Mamasan, order the Chef Selection degustation and let the chef take care of the everything—as he probably should since the menu has been given more love and attention than your average toddler—leaving you to sit back and enjoy a few too many specialty cocktails as each course surprises and delights you. With next-level cuisine such as this, it comes as no surprise Mamasan rates among the best restaurants in Broadbeach.
Pray for: Pork Bao and Mamasan KFC
Where: Oracle Boulevard, Broadbeach
Or perhaps you’re in the mood for a light, summery seafood degustation experience? At Peppers’ Seaduction restaurant, the stunning chef’s selection five-course menu is elegant in every sense of the word. Using only the freshest and highest quality seafood and produce, Seaduction’s degustation ensures you’ll experience taste sensations and dishes in general you’ve not seen nor heard of before. Seriously, these are the dishes you see on Masterchef, and dismiss because nobody REALLY gets that technical with food, do they? They do, and it’s at Seaduction.
Wait for: Lasagne of Harvey Bay scallops, tempura foie gras, caviar, and sea foam (mmm, sea foam…)
Where: Level 2, Soul Surfers Paradise, 8 The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise
Lastly, earning a solidified spot among Gold Coast’s best degustations is Videre at RACV Royal Pines. Videre is seemingly set in its’ own little world, with panoramic, picturesque views of the Gold Coast giving that feeling you’ve escaped the daily grind for a night. The degustation menu is centrally focused on putting a modern spin on traditional flavour combinations, combinations which on paper you think you can predict, but the dishes as a whole are sensory heaven. Having said this, this particular menu definitely has something for everyone with several crowd pleasers to satisfy even the fussiest eater. Our tip, splash out and pair your feast with accompanying wines (oh, and book a room so you don’t need travel far when you crash with a food coma).
Wait for: Cured kingfish – avocado puree, radish, fennel, and tomato dressing
Where: RACV Royal Pines Resort, Ross Street, Benowa
Photo Credit: Edmond Tsang for Metropolist