With not many days until Christmas, Espresso and Matcha are looking forward to their long awaited holiday soon! Having said that, it was also time for my annual company Christmas lunch. This year we had it at Motion Bar & Grill, situated in the Marriott hotel on Queen Street, which was a step up from Jade Budda last year.
Being part of the organisation social committee this year, we arrived early and helped with the setup by putting decorations and bonbons on each table.
One drink per person was provided as part of the lunch package. I followed recommendations of my colleagues and settled for a glass of champagne, which was a cheery start to the meal.
Entrees started coming soon after we sat down. As it was a set menu with alternate drop, I was lucky to have a companion who was willing to share their meal with me "for research purposes". This is their entree, being the Mushroom, Green Olive and Parmesan Tart with Roasted Garlic and Seeded Aioli. Whilst she didn't enjoy the mushroom paste on top of the tart, we did find the pastry itself to be flaky and delicious. The rocket was a nice addition, which complemented the seeded aioli well.
As for myself, I had the Chicken Currant Roulade with Chestnut Puree, Chorizo and Herb. Having done some prior research on the dish, I was looking forward to trying this. Roulade is apparently a traditional European dish, which is made from rolled up meats filled with cheeses and veges. I was very surprised that at the lack of "rolling" in the meats, although it was ovular in shape and filled with some currants, it was vastly different from what I expected. The chicken had a very processed texture to it, and reminded me a bit of the old chicken burgers that highschool canteens would sell. The chorizos though, were nicely grilled and made for quite the appetizer.
After a not insignificant wait (which was reasonable, as they had to cater for 80 people), our mains arrived. My colleague had the Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder with Honey Roasted Carrots, Spiced Labna, Mint and Pistachio. The general consensus between all of us was that it was overcooked to the point where the meat was tough but stringy, and there was insufficient sauce for the portion provided. The carrots though were roasted quite tender, and turned out to be quite popular.
Whilst my companions had lamb, I had the Traditional Christmas Turkey and Glazed Ham with Pistachio Stuffing, Roasted Root Vegetables and Cranberry Jus. To start with, the portion was significantly bigger than the lamb (despite it not being as obvious on the photo). Unfortunately though, the ham tasted quite ordinary, and the turkey also lacked a bit of texture. The roasted potato and parsnip made up for this though, and I really enjoyed the lashing of gravy on the side. I only wish there was a bit more.
Desserts were served not long after that. This was the Raspberry and Lemon Mousse with Vanilla Sponge and Elderflower Jelly. It turned out to be quite light and mild. A friend who had not seen the menu summed it up quite well in saying it tasted like "cream and cupcakes with berries". What I found confusing though, was the piece of printed paper that it was served with. Whilst the dish would have been a bit plain without it, it may have been less confusing if it had been decorated with chocolate swirls or something else that is edible.
My dessert was the Mini Christmas Pudding with Brandied French Creme and Roasted Cinnamon Ice Cream. The Christmas pudding had a texture similar to a brownie, with added fruitiness. As always, I love brandied cream, which always adds a bit of joy to every dessert, but the highlight for me was the cinnamon ice cream, which was an interesting addition as it was both cold and a little spicy at the same time.
Complimentary coffee and chocolates were served soon after that, which rounded off the meal quite delightfully.
Price Range: $50 - $70pp