Level One at Electra House - 2019 Winter Menu Tasting

Level One at Electra House - Level 1, 131 King William St, Adelaide SA 5000


Level One, hidden up the sweeping art deco staircase in the entryway of Electra House, has been setting high standards for contemporary dishes since opening in 2016. We have visited their restaurant previously and have always found their creative cuisine to be exemplary (see our previous reviews here). I (Dani) was looking forward to seeing what head chef Josh Kim had included in their new Winter Menu.


Scallop Huea $20

This delicate arrangement of tender scallops was served within a glistening yuzu sauce. The scallops melted in our mouths and dissolved into a sweetness which melded perfectly with the bright citrus notes of the yuzu. The rice puffs were a perfect addition, the delicate pops of crunch texturising every bite and the wasabi salt’s gentle warmth helped to heighten the overall flavours. Our waitress had recommended a Guthrie Chardonnay to start and it’s refined citric notes and creamy mouth-feel was a perfect accompaniment to this dish.


South Australia Kingfish Sashimi $23

Level One brings in a new kingfish from the market every day for this dish and the quality is evident from first glance. Served on top of a colourful mountain of crisp vegetables and pool of gochujang infused dressing, this dish glistened with vibrant freshness. We began our exploration of the dish with one of the slices of kingfish by itself. The flesh was firm, luscious and so fresh that the ‘fishiness’ was muted and the umami of the nori wrapping and touch of horseradish was free to shine through.

Though it feels akin to the destruction of a Buddhist sand mandala, we then swirled the fish into the vegetables. The radiant dressing was savoury, sweet, and spicy and it transported hot and cold sensations from our tongues to tingle up and down our spines. The vegetable salad was nicely crunchy and the oiliness of the kingfish worked well with the fermented tang of the gochujang.


Grilled Asparagus $18

Though this dish seemed simple, we quickly discovered there was a lot more going on than first appeared. The lush cream sauce, which reminded me of a heavier version of Kewpie, contained morsels of mussels and tasted utterly indulgent. The asparagus carried the sauce well on its tender lengths and a light char to the stalks brought about a wonderful smokey richness.


Spicy Turmeric ‘Hummus’ $16

I’m a huge fan of hummus; but sorry chickpeas - cannellini beans are now my legume of choice. Inspired by the flavours of ayam goreng, the kitchen’s creative take on this classic dip was bright with turmeric and lime. The roti canai served with the dish was both crisp and soft and it’s warmth helped to open up the full spice potential of the dip. Shameless finger licking may have occurred!


Grilled Lamb Skewers (2pc) $14

After making a sensation at this year’s Tasting Australia event, Level One wisely acknowledged the public’s enthusiasm and added this dish to their menu. The lamb had been marinated in galangal (Thai ginger) and lemongrass before its rich fats were rendered to chargrilled perfection over the grill. The nam jim jaew sauce was well-matched to this dish, with toasted rice, spring onion and fish sauce cutting through the richness of the meat with a zing. We can definitely see how over 2 tonnes of these mouth-watering skewers were gobbled up at Tasting Australia!


Fermented Melon Salad $16

I really enjoyed the chef’s exploration of childhood memories throughout his menu. Having travelled through Asia myself, I could immediately taste his recollections of the fruit infused coconut beverages sold on Thai road-sides in this dish. Besides being absolutely beautiful to look at, with its flower-like arrangement of rockmelon sitting atop a perfectly cubed watermelon base, this dish was a tasting experience. The melon was still firm enough to create a firm mouth-feel and the sweet vinegar of the amazu enlivened the sweet coconut sauce.


Herbed Goolwa Pipis $28

This dish was a delicious exploration. Morsels of pipis were bathed in the fresh Thai herbs and spicy verjuice-infused sauce, so each one was a moist burst of flavour. The sharp pickle of the lotus root was another wonderful demonstration of the kitchen’s attention to creating a well-rounded flavour profile.


South Australian Grilled Baby Octopus $25

Though not part of the new winter menu, Level One’s octopus is a dish I fondly remembered from a previous visit and I couldn’t return without experiencing it again. The delicate pieces of octopus were bathed in an umami rich sauce which was complex in flavour - sweet and fruity, yet also smokey and spiced. Each savoury and glossy slice we tried from under the bed of diced Asian aromatics built wonderfully upon the tastes of the last.


Mapo Tofu $26

I’ve tried variations of this dish many times, but never with this attention to detail and quality. Noting our curious inspection of the dish, our well-informed waitress told us the iceberg-esque centre of our dish was a floating puff tofu and egg white. It rested in a traditional Sichuan mince-filled sauce and a side of rice awaited ready on the side. The chilli bean paste and fermented black beans in the sauce blended into the light fats of the pork and the well-cooked rice provided a welcome backbone to the slipperiness of the dish.


Tom Yum Vegetables $18

Another twist on a classic, the sour, sweet and spicy flavours of Thai Tom Yum have been refined into a stir-fried coating for a mixture of Asian mushrooms and greens. The dish was acidic and sweet and it was really nice to see that although the kitchen obviously has a talent with meats, they haven’t lost any attention to detail in the cooking of their vegetarian options.


Fried Ice Cream $14

If you have ever wandered through the Adelaide Show and inhaled the aromas of fried sweetness with relish then you need to try this dish. Silky, cold ice cream is encased in a hot, crunchy panko shell. As we cracked open the dessert we scooped up the caramel sauce awaiting underneath and everything melted into pure indulgence. Wisps of Persian fairy floss added to the fairground quality, whimsical aesthetic and overall sweetness of the dish. My inner child bounced with joy.


Poached Local Pear $14

The global influence definitely tips towards the French with this dish. A slice of almond dacquoise rested between a frame of poached pear and coconut sorbet. I’m a complete sweet-tooth, but I do appreciate when a pastry chef can create a dessert which keeps the sugars from becoming overwhelming. This was definitely the case with this dish. The tart berries mellowed into the lavish coconut sorbet and the pear still retained enough firmness to hold its sweet, citrus-like essence.


Level One dining area

Our evening with Level One was an absolute pleasure. Their dining area has a welcoming ambience and their knowledgeable staff are incredibly helpful, without being intrusive to the dining experience. If you’re looking for a venue for anything from a celebratory evening with a group of friends to a romantic evening with someone special, they offer a stunning space and sensational menu.


Level One Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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