The tastes of summer

Executive chef Nic Wood. Inset: Cinnamon salted cuttlefish. Pictures: Andrew Ritchie d427677
Executive chef Nic Wood. Inset: Cinnamon salted cuttlefish. Pictures: Andrew Ritchie d427677

Newcomer to the hotel, Nic Wood, has taken control of the kitchen, producing stunning fare perfect for the warmer months.

He has divided the menu in to categories including entree, grill, ocean, land, pizza, pasta and risotto, sides, dessert, and cheese so diners can enjoy everything from a steak to truffle mac and cheese.

On a recent visit, several items caught my eye and first up was the cinnamon salted cuttlefish.

Served with cucumber, chilli, coriander, mint and pineapple ($18.50), this dish was light and fresh with just a little bit of zing.

The sticky barbecue pork belly was next, served with herb, salad and citrus ($18).

When it came to mains, my dining partners and I decided we would try, the 300g Angus scotch fillet ($38), citrus poached ocean trout and the African spiced chicken skewer ($32).

The steak was cooked perfectly while the trout was picture perfect. The African spiced chicken skewer, roasted peppers, baby eggplant and onion, served with cucumber yoghurt, was a showstopper.

With little room for dessert, it was the smashed chocolate tart with dried and fresh raspberries, sugared peanuts and chocolate creme ($14) that got the nod.

Beautifully presented and a chocoholics dream, it was the perfect way to end the day.

The Rydges Hotel also holds Chick Chat lunches every month, with the next one being a spring racing theme with local milliner Debbie Kelly.

For more information, phone 9263 1859.