Why do people in #Canberra rave about Sage Dining Rooms @sagemint1

Bron and I have been to Sage a few times and I’ve enjoyed an outing there for work during a menu testing period. Each time we’ve enjoyed the experience and always say we’ll be back because the food and service is always so good.

This time is no different. Imagine a warm Friday evening in Canberra just before a long weekend. I’ve reserved a table for the À la carte meal at 6 pm. 

Soon after being seated we’re served an amuse-bouche from the chef. It’s a salt and vinegar crumb on Hollandaise sauce. The first spoon transports you back to your first time eating a packet of salt and vinegar chips. It’s delightful. I’d eat a soup bowl full if I could.

Salt and vinegar crumb with Hollandaise sauce. Butter and salt flakes in the background.
Salt and vinegar crumb with Hollandaise sauce. Butter and salt flakes in the background.

We’re presented with the menu which looks amazing.


For an entrée Bron asks for the 63 °C egg and I ask for the ocean trout.

Perfectly cooked 63 °C egg. Slow Cooked Hen’s Egg, Pearl Barley Porridge, Cavalo Nero, Celery Cress.
Perfectly cooked 63 °C egg. Slow Cooked Hen’s Egg, Pearl Barley Porridge, Cavalo Nero, Celery Cress.
Ocean trout. Sugar Cured Ocean Trout, Zucchini Flower, Poppy Seed, Yagoona Yoghurt.
Ocean trout. Sugar Cured Ocean Trout, Zucchini Flower, Poppy Seed, Yagoona Yoghurt.

It goes without saying that we both enjoyed these entrés. Bron was very enamoured with the egg and explained in some detail just how perfect this egg was. The yolk looked amazing and the white helped form the porridge. I was quite taken with how the corn and raisins complemented each other. The corn was dry and crispy and added a lovely texture to each mouthful.


For our main courses dishes Bron asked for the Wagyu beef and I went for the calamari and pork belly.

Wagyu Beef Picanha,, Marrow Custard, Chicharron, Celery, Watercress.
Wagyu Beef Picanha, Marrow Custard, Chicharron, Celery, Watercress.
Poached Calamari, Berkshire Pork Belly, Cured Organic Egg, Yuzu, Xo, Crumbs.
Poached Calamari, Berkshire Pork Belly, Cured Organic Egg, Yuzu, Xo, Crumbs.

You can see the large dollops of marrow custard that sit with beef skin crackling. While with my dish you can see a lovely tender calamari and pork that has been cooked slowly for a long time.

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A small mountain of delicious Paris mash with truffle and parmesan.
A small mountain of delicious Paris mash with truffle and parmesan.
That's me applying some of the Paris mash to the last morsel of pork belly.
That’s me applying some of the Paris mash to the last morsel of pork belly.
The Paris mash was good. It would be a shame not to finish it.
The Paris mash was good. It would be a shame not to finish it.

After the main course dishes a palate cleansing pre-dessert was served.

Licorice crunch on the bottom, carrot sorbet in the middle and yoghurt on top. You need to eat all the layers at once because the yoghurt is quite sour.
Licorice crunch on the bottom, carrot sorbet in the middle and yoghurt on top. You need to eat all the layers at once because the yoghurt is quite sour.

At first I was not convinced as I took a small spoon of yoghurt. It was quite sour. Bron explained that each spoonful needed to scoop through all three layers.My next spoon was a brilliant combination of sweet carrot and tangy yoghurt that balanced each other perfectly and left with a mellow freshness.


The desserts came out after a short break. Bron went with the Eton mess and I chose the peanut paste parfait. Okay, the menu was peanut butter but I always say peanut paste. I’ll explain why in another post.

Sage’s Eton Mess, Tarragon Ice-Cream, Sage Farm Berries, Matcha Tea, Silkwood Pepper.
Sage’s Eton Mess, Tarragon Ice-Cream, Sage Farm Berries, Matcha Tea, Silkwood Pepper.
Peanut Paste Parfait, Zokoko Chocolate, Jersey Milk Skin, Salted Caramel.
Peanut Butter Parfait, Zokoko Chocolate, Jersey Milk Skin, Salted Caramel.

Bron mentioned during her dessert how much she was enjoying the tarragon flavours in her ice cream and how it complemented the berries and other elements of her dish.

For me the parfait was fantastic. I especially liked the white chocolate and salted caramel. 


As we’ve come to expect the food and service were of the highest quality. The wait staff were friendly and knowledgable and very helpful when it came to explaining the complexity of each dish. The ambience was just right; even though there was music playing at the bar outside, it didn’t create a disturbance inside the dining rooms.

Our only reservation was we thought the meal was a little rushed. We were booked for a 6 pm meal and I’d been told that the second sitting would be at 8 pm. The amuse-bouche, bread and entrées all came out in quick succession. The entrée came out seconds after the amuse bouche was cleared away. We had a longer gap before the pre-dessert and then a slightly longer gap before the dessert. We were walking out at 8 pm with the sun still shining and the warmth of the day still hanging in the air. We also noticed there were still empty tables. It would have been perfect if there was a little more time between the amuse bouche and entrées and main course dishes.

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We would happily recommend Sage Dining Rooms to anyone who appreciates fine dining coupled with impeccable service.

I’m happy to rave about Sage Dining Rooms because the food and service is so good.

Sage Restaurant on Urbanspoon

http://www.sagerestaurant.net.au/

Sage Restaurant and Mint Garden Bar, Gorman House Arts Centre, Batman St, Braddon ACT 2612
T (02) 6249 6050
F (02) 6249 8563
E sagerestaurant.act@gmail.com
Twitter @SageMint1
RESERVATIONS
Bookings on 02 6249 6050
Restaurant hours
Dinner 5.30 to 10 pm Tuesday to Saturday
Lunch Tuesday to Saturday 12 to 2 pm
Bar hours Tuesday to Friday 4 pm to Late, Saturday 12 pm to Late

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8 Responses

  1. That mashed potato looks absolutely amazing. I often pick my mains based on the sides and mashed potato is almost always a winner. But was it a separate side order at Sage? I love places that give me potato options.

    But I hate two sittings!

    1. Hello Caroline,
      Yep the mashed potato is a side along with some of the usual salad type sides. This was pretty good but the nicest mashed potato or Paris mash as the posh people say was at Aria in Sydney.
      Even though it’s not very good for me, I can’t resist finishing off the bowl of mashed potato especially if it’s made with lots of butter and cream.
      Thanks for commenting 🙂

    1. I hope you can get there soon Rose. I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy the experience. The wait staff are very friendly and helpful with information about each dish. My problem is I don’t pay enough attention and take notes when they describe the details 🙂

    1. The conflict resolution teaching I’ve been through suggests rather than an entrée and a main you ask for two main courses to satisfy your desires.

  2. It seems Sage has totally mesmerized you with its delicious food! The most interesting part about your post is the lovely dessert which looks so perfectly presented with superb toppings to complement it.

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