I’ve come to know the team at Taxi Dining Room pretty well over the past few years as it’s often the starting point for my Restaurant Tour of Melbourne. On the tour guests get to enjoy a tutored sake tasting plus some awesome sushi before heading off into the streets of Melbourne.
Besides joining my fellow tour guests I’ve also been lucky enough to dine here on a couple of occasions, but not for some time. So an invitation to be a guest at a special Sake Dinner was a most welcome invite and one I was very happy to accept. I was there as their guest, so yes, one of ‘those’ media freebies.
The dinner gave me a great chance to take heaps of photos and to watch the restaurant (and its riverside surrounds) transform as Melbourne turned from day to night. The elevated position on the edge of Federation Square means you can enjoy CBD and Yarra River views while enjoying some stunning Japanese / European influenced dishes. The kitchen is also open to customers so there’s plenty of food-as-theatre there too.
Taxi Dining Room still retains its position as one of the most beautiful modern dining rooms in town. It is also one of the destination restaurants with a quality of food and service not seen too often. Executive Chef Tony Twitchett recently took over the reins from long time chef Michael Lambie. It seems to have been a seamless transition as the food here continues to be excellent.
As someone who gave up meat last year (but not fish) I was hoping for plenty of seafood tastes. Well my wish certainly came through as these came thick and fast. Each dish was matched with different sake, specially chosen and introduced by Taxi’s resident sake sommelier Ollie Wang. Flavours in the drinks he selected ranged from fruity to dry and were richly textured. A million miles from the common perception of sake as firewater and best served warm.
I’m not going to review each and every course because they were outstanding across the board and in this case a picture says a thousand words. Although I do have to give big thumbs up to the tuna tartare with scampi and coffee, vanilla dressing. So enjoy the photos, this meal really did taste as good as it looks.
Taxi Dining Room is at Level 1, Transport Hotel, Federation Square. 03) 9654 8808. Full menu and wine list details are online at the Taxi Dining Room website.