It’s that time of the year again when the Sydney waterfront promenades fill up with pedestrians out on all nights of the week (despite the chill) to enjoy the spectacular visual feast that is the Vivid light festival.
Considering its well-positioned location right in the heart of The Rocks (especially with the stunning views of the Opera House from their Presidential Suite!), it’s no surprise that the Four Seasons Hotel is offering a special dining experience during Vivid (running from 24 May 2019 until 15 June 2019) at its in-house restaurant Mode Kitchen & Bar called the Chroma Dinner.
View from the Presidential Suite at the Four Seasons Hotel
The Chroma Dinner is a colour-themed culinary and sensory experience priced at $145 a head, showcasing four dishes and cocktails following the RGB spectrum (red/green/blue). This unique dinner and cocktail offering has been curated by their head chef Francesco Mannelli, together with Grain Bar manager Roderick Boerma and BBR Agency.
The sensory element became apparent very quickly when we joined a preview event for this dinner. We stepped into a private room off the side of Mode Kitchen & Bar with completely bare white walls, lights, speakers and an one-of-a-kind virtual reality projector set up. As we dined, we were bathed in a kaleidoscopic atmosphere of images, colours and sounds in theme with the four courses – taken one step further with scented menu cards for each course too.
We started with the Green course, which is called “Fishing in the Jungle”. This dish was delicately plated up, a perfect ring with slivers of fresh Hiramasa kingfish, herbs and Aboriginal green ants, with a gorgeous chlorophyll and stracciatella essence we poured into the centre. With the lush Amazon jungle backdrop projected onto the walls and ceiling as our surrounds, it was quite a way to start our culinary journey. We also loved the inventive way they delivered the cocktail for this course – in the form of a very intensely flavoured Green Savanna Jelly consisting of gin, dry vermouth, honey and rocket that went down easily.
“Fishing in the Jungle”
Next up, we found ourselves under the sea swimming with the dolphins in a vibrant reef environment and digging into a vividly coloured Spanner Crab Risotto which had been enhanced by scampi caviar and purple cabbage. The blue colour didn’t have any effect on the flavour of the risotto for us, which was quite savoury and infused with essence of the ocean through the shredded spanner crab and pops of luxe scampi caviar. Our paired cocktail for this course was a silky smooth Toji Junmai Ginjo sake.
Our last main course was the intriguing Devil’s Bath, brought in by hooded figures holding fiery lanterns while images of fire crackled on the walls. This dish featured fresh Ruby Snapper fillets hidden under slices of radish, with a smoked strawberry gazpacho that blended sweet and savoury notes together in an unexpected way. This was all enhanced by a delicious Strawberry Fields cocktail that fused together Tanqueray gin, creme de fraises, lemon juice and habenero chilli bitters.
For dessert, we were treated to an interesting proposition – a Sweet Canvas that consisted of a perfect sphere of White Chocolate, Vanilla and Mandarin Mousse (which was wonderfully airy) with a “palette” of blueberry, raspberry and pistachio on the side. We were invited to let our inner child out and get creative as the psychedelic lights came on, by using the brush to create our own blend of red, green and blue on the sphere – to varying degrees of artistic success. Anyway, the important thing is that the pistachio was the most delectable paint we’ve ever had, closely followed by the raspberry puree. The dessert was paired with a potent La Vie cocktail featuring vodka and white chocolate, continuing the minimalist theme.
The Chroma Dinner is a truly unique experience in Sydney – blending together all sorts of sensory elements to create a memorable and immersive night for your tastebuds, vision and sense of smell. This is a stylish way for gourmands to celebrate and enjoy Vivid 2019 through one of the top hotels in the city – before joining the crowds along the harbour to see what delights this year’s festival has to offer.
Excuse Me Waiter dined as guests of the Four Seasons Hotel and the BBR agency
Mode Kitchen & Bar
Ground Floor, The Four Seasons Hotel
199 George Street Sydney NSW 2000
Phone: (02) 9250 3160