This will probably be the worst review you’ve read about Morks. Why? Well, I’d like to think of myself as a true foodie first, and a blogger second, therefore I photographed, ate, enjoyed and gesticulated wildly about the place, and ate some more, drank a fabulous Alsace Pinot Gris, (thanks M, tops choice), yapped and caught up on all the Solomon Island gossip, and ate some more. And since I visited Morks in mid December, my memory aint what it used to be.
So, I’ve completely forgotten to write down what two out of our 6 dishes were. I put my plea out to the Twitter world, I hashtagged Morks on Instagram and I even read every review on Urban Spoon for Morks in the hopes someone et what I et. How can noone in Canberra, out of the thousands upon thousands of Morks diners not have properly labelled their photo’s of the same meals that I ate? It doesn’t make sense. And before you say, duh, check out their online menu, Morks regularly updates their menu depending on what’s fresh and in season. Rude! Anyway, if noone responds to my frantic social media efforts, here’s at it…
Before I start, if you want a great read about the boys running the tight ship that is Morks, check out Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things chat with Mork. You’ll find this review much more interesting and fun fact filled. Here is a pic of the two lads, Benn and Mork courtesy of the Morks website.
My table of 3 were swamped in a sea of trendy hipsters, celebrating the coming Christmas season on this chilly Canberra Summer Saturday night, fuelling up for a night on the Foreshore. I’d been looking forward to our reservation for weeks; with good friends, finally getting in on some of this Morks action. Let’s go to the coolest place in town, I said to my well travelled foodie friends. It’s supposed to be fantastic, I said. Simply everyone who’s anyone has eaten there. Except me. A tip to the wise, or the non-hipster, olderish person – go during the week. Saturday night and this place was absolutely pumping, which is all well and good if you enjoy your fine Thai with a serve of yelling. Me, I like my dinner a little more subdued.
Did it detract from our lovely meal? No, the food is truly awesome, the wine list is detailed and indepth and I’ll do it all again just so I can sit and linger, enjoy the lovely space and not feel like gettin the hell outta there so we could hear ourselves think. Oh, to be young again, eh? And I’m not even middle aged.
A started her evening with a cider, which she pronounced as a perfect match to go with what I thought was the perfect meal. On my next trip I’ll order this in a main meal size and then upsize it. Pork scratching salad. With cashews, coriander, tangy thai dressing, roasted rice and did I mention pork crackling? Who said you can’t make friends with salad, huh? If I put this on my menu, everyone would be my friend too.
This is a stalwart dish and on the menu all the time. Pan seared scallops and pigs ear terrine with a delightful sauce of coriander root, garlic, chilli and lemon juice, tangy and salty all at the same time. Now, this may be a contentious opinion, since everyone raves about this dish, but it wasn’t my fav on the night. The scallops were cooked perfectly, generous in size and well seasoned, but the pigs ear terrine, not my cup of tea, its the texture that I can’t really come at. Pig and I go way back, but this probably won’t be repeated. Now if these scallops were served with crispy caramelised Thai pork sausage on top, and the divine hot dressing, we could be best friends.
I believe this was A’s fav dish of the night, but I could be wrong. Crunchy Sizzling Angel prawns, with a coconutty kaffir lime sauce, the sauce was punchy and sizzling hot, coming out in these gorgeous terracotta pots. I love coriander and loved it, especially with this, not overpowering the fresh seafood, but wonderfully offestting the sweet coconut, dryish sauce and crunchy prawns. It’s these small details that make Morks the place that it is. It’s quite clear that the chef knows what goes with what, and does it well.
Did I mention how much I loved this dish? Who’d of thunk it, to put pork crackling with coriander and spring onions and roasted cashews and a chilli dressing? Does the crackling go soft under lashings of the dressing? No, by some miracle it stays crispy. Masterpiece. I’d absolutely love to make this at home. Will have to try and coerce the recipe out of them on Twitter. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, afterall…
The Morks duck red curry and crispy rice cake is another stayer. The crispy rice cake is reminiscent of the rice I served with the twice cooked crispy skin chicken, and this is exactly was I was trying to achieve. Although, Morks do it a little better than I. The red curry sauce had quite a kick, and who doesn’t love fried basil leaves? Yummo. Tender duck that fell off the bone, but honestly, the duck wasn’t the best bit, I reckon. The sauce, the lychees, the fried rice cake, they maketh the dish. Tasty, tasty, tasty.
This would be pork. Pork ribs, boneless, and one of the dishes that I didn’t write down. Melting, moreish, caramel bb’d pork. Also my favourite dish. Can I have two favourite dishes? I’d really like to know what the sauce was. By this stage we’d consumed a fair bit of food between the 3 of us and were starting to get pretty full. Benn had suggested we try a number of dishes, as they’re all prefect for sharing. I love the idea of sharing dishes. It goes against my generous sharing nature to order a meal and eat it all myself. The whole point of dining out is to try as much food of the establishment as possible. That’s my mantra, anyway, try and get your hands on as many meals as politely possible. Ha ha ha. Politely.
This was the fresh fish special of the day, not sure what, but it was crispy skinned, soft cooked flesh and a bright vibrant curry sauce with crispy sweet potato chips for texture. I’d love anyone from Mork’s to contact me and let me know just what deliciousness we consumed this fine evening. Or anyone else for that matter. I promise to update the post.
The service was great, even though the restaurant was packed. I believe we met Benn, who seated us and popped back every now and again to make sure all was good. The service was, how should I put it? Familiar. Warm. Inviting. We’ll be back.