Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Crave-ing a Sugar Hit: Azuma dessert bento box

Crave Sydney International Food Festival officially kicked off yesterday (following the lavish launch at Flying Fish last Thursday night with live marron on display being my highlight).

I often reach eating capacity before I get to dessert, but the opportunity to preview Azuma's Sugar Hit for this year's event meant dessert before dinner and none of the normal capacity issues.

East meets West Dessert Bento Box at Azuma, Chifley Square, Sydney
for Crave Sydney International Food Festival
Presented in classy, almost kaiseki manner with separate little components, Azuma's dessert bento box offering has to be one of the better value-for-money Sugar Hit options.

In addition to, essentially four mini desserts, diners get a choice of a glass of Brown Brothers dessert wine or green tea, as well as a small serve of sake. The nigori cloudy white sake was my pick over the plum or yuzu nigoriflavoured sake.

Home-made yuzu sorbet
It's a good idea to start with the scoop of yuzu sorbet. It is a perfect balance of sweet and citrussy tart, with the added whimsical pleasure of pop rocks that tingle, sparkle and pop on the tongue.

Kawaii panna cotta
The Japanese style panna cotta is made with both soy and cow's milk. It is made spectacular - not by the cutesy fruit face or soba buckwheat noodles fried crisp and sweet - but by the toffee-caramelly brown sugar jelly at the bottom of the martini glass.

The jelly is made from an Okinawan sugar and syrup which is an Azuma family recipe, and it's pretty special.

Gateaux chocolat (front), Marble Gateaux Cookies (back, right) and nigori yuzu sake
The marble gateaux cookies were short and sweet, while my favourite had to be the slice of gateaux chocolate, topped classically with berries and fresh cream.

Again, Azuma turns the normal into something special with an addition of candied violet 'pebbles'. The sweet floral fragrance from these purple bits amazed me - and I only wished there was more.

It was also impressively light in flavour and texture, as Azuma strives to use techniques that use less sugar, cream and other fats.

Crave Sugar Hit at Azuma
The Brown Brothers Cienna Rosso dessert wine is apparently a new variety. Served chilled, it's sweet with berry notes and best paired with the chocolate desserts.

Another year, another Crave - let the month of eating and drinking begin.

Food, booze and shoes previewed the Sugar Hit as a guest of Azuma.

Note: Azuma announced his three Regent Place, George Street outlets - Kushiyaki, Azuma Patisserie and Ton Ton - will close during October. New, nearby locations are planned in the near-term. Their Crave Sydney International Food Festival events will all be taking place at Azuma in Chifley Square.

Azuma on Urbanspoon


Food is our religion said...

Speaking of the devil! Was actually just talking about Azuma's sugar hit! They never seem to fail.

Vivian - vxdollface said...

Good to see you again love x
Planning on going again with a few friends because I loved it ^^

Missy Piggy said...

Ha ha, love the Kawaii panacotta - too cute! I've not been to a Sugar Hit before...trying to avoid them for the sake of my ever expanding tummy.

My Kitchen Stories. said...

Looks interested and a good way to start Crave.

Tina said...

Hi Food is our religion - Well timed ;) This was my first Azuma one - just delightful!

Hi Vivian - And you! This month is going to be nuts...!

Hi Miss Piggy - And I'm normally all filled up by savouries. It's going to be a big month...

Hi My Kitchen Stories - Sure was, so much to do this month!

Next Stop: Food said...

The Kawaii panna cotta so kawaii :) Can't wait to come here next week after Night Noodle Market - Gotta love October!


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