Presentation (5): 5
Taste (5): 3.5
Service (5): 3.5
Atmosphere (5): 3.5
Very few places are capable of kicking up such a huge fuss over one dish but boy has Bentwood managed to achieve that with the Golden Gaytime Panna Cotta. Time to check out this legendary dessert and what else this inner suburbs haven has to offer!
From the people behind Penta, Tinker and MOB - I had high expectations walking in. As usual the space is beautiful with little touches such as quotes hidden on the floors and walls that added lots of character to the space. It was very spacious and bright with a rustic feel due to the warehouse space it is situated. One down side to this thought is that there is a lot of ambient noise so find a quiet corner for yourself or take one of the outdoor seats for those more intimate chats.
In terms of food, the Eggs Benny (Braised beef cheek, watercress, poached eggs, jalapeno hollandaise on sweet potato waffles) wasn't a stand out eggs benny but definitely brought its A game. The sweet potato waffle was yum and crispy with the use of sweet potato a nice healthy twist that I enjoyed. To carry on the flavour the beef cheek was a stand out as it was injected with so much flavour that I really finished it all - even though I'm not normally the biggest fan of beef cheek. The main downside was that there could've been a stronger jalapeno or hollandaise flavour to the sauce as it didn't really bring much to the table.
To the main event - the Golden Gaytime Panna Cotta (Chocolate panna cotta, salted caramel, honeycomb biscuit crumbs, roasted peanuts, banana, strawberries, raspberries and red velvet tuille). A fair disclaimer would be that this was a let down as I had such high expectation off of the amazing Nutella Panna Cotta at Penta. It definitely was not a panna cotta as it lacked the texture of one...acting more like a mousse and having none of that panna cotta wobble. It was also too rich and there was not enough caramel flavour in the crumb to really be called a 'golden gaytime'. Taking a step back though it was an ok dish for what it was with the fruit being welcome pop of freshness on the palate.
On a whole - Bentwood is worth the visit because of its beauty and its use of flavours. I would come back to try the other dishes on the menu (especially the hotcakes) but if you're coming to just try the Golden Gaytime Panna Cotta...maybe give it a second thought or save it for sharing just to get the experience.