We had the pleasure of staying at the stunning Bangalay Luxury Villas, only 2.5 hours from the Sydney CBD, in Shoalhaven Heads, which we found out about through Destination NSW. You can read about the accomodation through our blog here. In this relaxing seaside location, there is also an amazing on site restaurant, Bangalay Dining.
The concept of Bangalay Villas was to present the idea of a nostalgic beach holiday to customers, whilst also showcasing an area, rich plant life including eucalypt, banksia, lily pili and other Australian natives. The restaurant is in fitting with this. The restaurant feels comfortable and relaxed, situated on the beach side of the property.
Bangalay Dining opens for breakfast daily, as well as lunch and dinner on weekends. The space opens out onto the deck and even serves take away coffees to locals, who you’ll see aplenty, heading for their daily walk to the beach. The outdoor coffee counter means you can walk up and grab your coffee in a pet friendly environment.
In terms of the menu, it has been composed with a focus on using sustainable and native ingredients harmonised with the area. A real paddock to plate concept. Chef Brent Strong, created this menu with that in the forefront of his mind. He has had a lot of experience in fine dining, working as a private chef on luxury yachts, but now, back in his home town, he is a local who was keen to represent the area by providing an approachable menu, using suppliers from the local area. You can read more about them here.
Bangalay Dining offers an ala Carte and tasting menu. We were dining as part of a group and had the 6 course tasting menu, which costs $85 per person. You can also pair your dinner with wines, which are selected from the local area and Cupitt’s in Milton.
We began with a few cocktails, including a lemon Myrtle Pina Colada and a Lily Pili Rose with vodka, gin, rose syrup, lime and sofa. All their cocktails are made with native ingredients like wattleseed, lemon Myrtle and saltbush to name a few.
We begin with sourdough and cultured butter, always a good start to any dinner.
The first course was a lightly cured Spanish Mackerel, an absolutely picture perfect dish, which looked like a little present, with the mackerel wrapped in thinly sliced fermented daikon, and flavoured with mandarin and had a nice smokiness of flavour coming from the prosciutto. Topped with beautiful flowers.
This dish was paired with Cupitt’s 2018 “MV” Marsanne Viognier.
This was followed by a dish that at first sight looked like pasta, but was a creamy and delicious Sabago potato dish, made with Macadamia and native thyme.
The potato was matched with Cupitt’s The Pointer Tumbarumba Chardonnay.
An absolute highlight was the single Scampi flavoured with Lemon Myrtle, Leek and topped with watercress. Presented sitting on a a dash of aioli and small shards of leek.
The scampi was matched with Coolangatta Estate’s Wollstoncraft Semillon.
One of our other favourite dishes was the Wagyu topside, a piece of local pasture raised top sided meat braised over night, served with an absolutely deliciously sauced slow cooked meat, sitting beside nicely flavoured oyster mushrooms, eggplant and small pieces of crisp shredded kale.
Paired with a rich 2016 Tannet wine from the Coolangatta Estate.
After this rich dish and prior to desserts, we had a palate cleanser, a light refreshing dish, which was a quenelle of sheeps yoghurt gelato, served with oat granola and a sorrel granola. I’d also happily eat a bowl of the granola for breakfast too.
This was followed up with a beautiful creamy wattleseed Ice cream, hazelnut mousse and caramelised white chocolate. The liquid nitrogen saw a fog coming from the plate. It’s deconstructed presentation looked like a modern work of art.
We were lucky enough to get a special extra dessert on the night. An ice cream with granita. Chef Brett tells us that they use the crust of the sourdough for the ice cream and milk off their butter for the granita. All of this worked together so well.
They paired the desserts with a macadamia liquor from Mountain Ridge wines.
Whilst staying at Bangalay, we also enjoyed brunch. Whilst a number of their options sounded extremely appealing, we opted for the slow poached egg with mixed mushrooms, polenta, truffle pecorino and asparagus. The lovely truffle flavour shone through the ingredients.
We also enjoyed a chilled chia pudding with fresh and preserved seasonal fruit, local honey and a chia crisp.
Each brekkie comes with a fresh mini croissant and jar of diced fruits. Be sure to also order an all press coffee or herbal tea too.
This menu is certainly approachable, evident by the mixed crowd of adults, couples and families. They even have a child’s menu and High chairs.
We absolutely loved this dining experience and will most certainly be back.
30 Staples Street, enter via McIntosh Street, Shoalhaven Heads 2535 NSW