Saturday, July 29, 2006

Solitary, Cliff Drive, Leura

Solitary, Cliff Drive, Leura
Saturday 29 July, 2006

Solitary is an institution in the Blue Mountains. Formally known as Leura Falls Kiosk, then the Fork n View and now Solitary - the present owners have honoured it's history by creating a memorial in the entrance way. Beautiful cursive text is elaborately written across the walls sharing the colourful past and respecting the former owners. It's a lovely touch.

My dinner buddies this evening had visited many, many, many years ago and had a nickname for one of it's previous owners, 'Toothy' because of her buck teeth. We laughed as we saw photos of Toothy and read about what the restaurant was like back then.

On a bitterly cold evening, Solitary turned on it's charm with the big open fireplace, warm, rich interiors and engaging staff. On arrival we were welcomed and invited to leave our coats so the staff could hang them on the large hooks hanging along the walls across from the bar.

The restaurant was almost full and our table was directly in front of the open fire. The menus were passed around and we spent some time reading and trying to understand the different offerings. It's not the easiest menu to comprehend and we asked a few questions. The staff were courteous and if they didn't know the answer they promptly found out. It was refreshing to have good, honest waiters.

Whilst the degustation menu sounded great, the whole table had to indulge. So, we continued to read and decide what we wanted. Each menu item was matched to a glass of wine making our wine selection easy. After much deliberation I ordered the following dishes:

- Mouclade of mussels, braised octopus and chorizo with saffron corzetti
- Roast Kangaroo Island chicken with goats cheese and parmesan crisp
- Chocolate and amaretto steamed pudding with amaretto zabaglioni and milk chocolate ice-cream

I am hard pressed to pick a winner here but if I had to....the stand out dish was the dessert - it was decadent but not overly rich. Solitary make all their ice cream on the premises and I can highly recommend the milk chocolate - wow!

The courses were served with considerate time between each making our whole dining experience relaxed. The food was lovely and very worthy of the awards it's received over the years including a few chef's hats.

My dinner buddies thoroughly enjoyed their meals and we all agreed that Solitary is the best restaurant we have visited in the Blue Moutains.

Solitary - 90 Cliff Drive, Leura - 02 4782 1164


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