It’s been months since I last wrote a proper food review and it feels nice to be back in the swing of things. What better way to start the ball rolling than with a look at the meal we had last October? S and I celebrated our anniversary at one80° Restaurant inside the Copthorne Hotel. We seldom splurge, but on special occasions like this one, we don’t mind spending a bit more than usual.
The one80° Restaurant is on the 7th floor of the hotel, with some of the tables near the big windows overlooking the harbour area and Oriental Bay. We requested for one of those tables and were seated at the far corner of the restaurant. It was a great spot for conversation with the husband as it was nice and quiet, but it also made it a bit difficult to catch the attention of some of the staff. Nevertheless, the view from the restaurant was great and we enjoyed watching the late afternoon turn into night time. Bonus points for the gentle, instrumental music playing in the background which I’m a big sucker for!
As I’ve already gone through the menu before arriving at the restaurant, I knew I wanted a platter of the local oysters for our starters. We requested them to be prepared in two ways: natural and tempura battered. We really tried to eat these as slowly as we can, but they were all gone before we knew it. S preferred the briny raw ones, while I was more keen on the crisp, battered version. Needless to say, both were superb in their own ways. It was one of my favorite parts of the entire meal.
S has always wanted to try the beef wellington after seeing them on several TV shows. You can just imagine how thrilled he was to see it on the menu that evening. The beef came out cooked just the way he likes his meat, with the mushroom duxelle giving it a richer, umami flavour. I got to try the black truffle potato gratin it was served with, which I agreed was delicious as well. S was delighted that everything went so well with his glass of pinot noir.
I had a bit of trouble deciding which main I wanted but ended up getting the lamb shank. It was a very good decision on my part! The meat was very, very tender and not gamey at all. The side of greens and the cumin tempered baby potatoes all added that extra something to make it a very well-rounded dish. It’s been a good while since I last enjoyed a dish like it.
We normally skip eating dessert at the same place when dining out, but decided to stay put this time. The bombe alaska was said to be the chef’s special, so of course I went ahead and ordered one. It came out smaller than I expected it to be, but later realized that it was the perfect size to end the meal. Just a note: the rose petal scent and flavor are really prominent in this dessert, so if you’re averse to anything with strong flowery notes, then you might want to steer clear of this one. Otherwise, the bombe alaska is a beautiful dessert and one we think you should try at least once.
S’ trio of handcrafted ice cream was the biggest surprise of that night. We fell in love with the olive oil flavor, which tasted cleaner and much more delicious than you’d think. Whoever thought that olive oil could work as an ice cream flavor was a genius! The darker scoop on the left was what we initially thought of as black sesame, but turned out to be charcoal flavor. It was another thing we didn’t expect to enjoy as much as we did. We wouldn’t mind going back to one80° even if it’s just for these two ice cream flavors!
…..and the oysters. Definitely going back for those as well.
one80° Restaurant and Lounger Bar: Copthorne Hotel, 100 Oriental Parade, Oriental Bay, Wellington