A bastion of heady luxury, MoMo is the epitome of a fine dining experience.
Melbourne’s Collins Street is New York’s 5th Avenue, London’s Mayfair precinct, Hong Kong’s Peak District. Anybody who is anybody in Melbourne covets a Collins Street address. Located in the swanky surrounds of the Grand Hyatt at the “Paris-end” of Melbourne, and accessed by its own private elevator, Momo is a bastion of heady luxury — sheer opal drapes, elegant cream decor, glistening swarovski crystal lighting, diners seated at plushly upholstered furniture, serviced by an entourage of uniformed staff. By contrast to vast numbers of Melbourne restaurants that have strayed to the casual, bistro end of the dining spectrum, Momo is arguably the finest example of finest fine dining in Melbourne.
MoMo & Coco visited for a celebratory dinner. Personally, we couldn’t think of a more perfect place for a very special celebration than what we consider a restaurant exclusively named after us (this is not true, of course, but we like to think so). We had long placed this extremely oh-so-fine restaurant on the “to-go-to-when-we-grow-up” wish list. Indeed, when we booked, we held a newspaper cutting of Momo extracted many years ago from the Age Epicure, before the original Momo relocated to its present location within the Grand Hyatt. As an aperitif, the Turkish Delight cocktail was a gloriously sweet starter to our extravagant dining (also available at the related downstairs Spice Market bar/lounge that specializes in stunning irresistibles of sweet alcoholism). Forgoing the tempting set sharing-style menus, MoMo & Coco considered the Middle Eastern (with European accents) a la carte menu, structured in the traditional 3-course style. Entrees selected for our party included two each of golden spiced calamari, soused eggplant, haloumy beignets and pimentos ($28), and beautifully spiced dishes of lamb kibbeh stuffed with almond tarator and served with baby and lady’s lettuce ($29). Mains sampled were the Bowen Farm barramundi sitting on a stew of broad beans and cumin, with a sesame kataifi slice for extra crisp ($50); and towering plates of the most succulent Glenloth chicken on a bed of garlic and porcini shoots, garnished with crushed coriander and Turkish chili ($49).
Despite being comfortably full after some of the most generously-sized entrees and mains encountered in the (short) history of our fine-dining experiences, MoMo & Coco ordered the “Dessert Mezza” ($37), the only dessert choice available excepting a bowl of fruits. This decadent dessert platter comprised of three irresistibles — the creme brulee with apple butterscotch sauce; rich chocolate cardamon slice with ginger crisp and gold leaf decoration and coffee cream icecream; and a cube dish of seasonal fruits, barberry sorbet, pistachio halver, cinnamon crisp and little Turkish delight pieces.
The related entities of MoMo & Coco ordered what we consider to be a most under-appreciated irresistible — the “Cafe Gourmand” (though, it wasn’t referred by this name on la carte) ($12). Served here middle-eastern style and in petite-trois – rosewater vanilla macarons, honeyed baklava and soft soft Turkish delights.
Highly reccommended for a memorable quiet celebration or romantic evening, Momo is the epitome of an all-round fine dining experience: flavoursome and sizeable food and irresistible ends, sampled in an opulent setting, and complemented by the most professional, courteous, personable and knowledgeable of service staff, who actually also smile. Momo is everything that fine dining should be and more. It certainly sets a high standard for other Melbourne restaurants to thrive towards.
Dessert adventure checklist
- ☑ Dessert destination: MoMo, 123 Collins Street, Melbourne CBD, Vic 3000.
- ☑ Budget: $$$$.
- ☑ Sweet irresistibles: Restaurant dessert. Neo-classical European with Middle Eastern accents.
- ☑ Must-eat: The “Dessert Platter.”
- ☑ The short and sweet story: A bastion of heady luxury, MoMo is the epitome of a fine dining experience.