Continuing on with our Mornington Peninsula getaway, the family booked a table at Veraison restaurant in Balnarring for a happy 55th wedding anniversary lunch for my grandparents. Last time we were on the Peninsula for a special occasion, we dined at a fancy restaurant which introduced us to foams as foods (!) – I felt a bit like a fish out of water.
The difference I noticed immediately at Veraison was the relaxed atmosphere – the lady who welcomed us was friendly and warm, and cracked a few jokes that instantly made everyone comfortable. Veraison have an A la carte menu, as well as a weekday set lunch menu, from which you can choose two or three courses for $45 or $55 respectively and according to their website, they source their produce from local Balnarring suppliers when in season, or from the organic veggie garden out the back. My family had called ahead to confirm they could cater for vegans, which thankfully they could. While the others had a few dishes to choose from, the bear and mine were set for us which was fine by us – as long as we were getting fed!
First up, we were served some lovely mushrooms stuffed with quinoa, some vegetables and capers, and topped with some fresh rocket. My memory fails as to what this was flavoured with, but I recall salty capers and what seemed like different textured quinoa – some well cooked and some lovely and crunchy that popped between your teeth. Bear sways more on the vegetarian side, and his was topped with goat’s cheese.
Next up, another stuffed dish! You all know how much I love food stuffed in food right? This was a cooked tomato filled with a creamy risotto and topped with some wilted tuscan kale. Simple and satisfying. I would have loved to see some crunchy texture with this – perhaps some toasted pine nuts – to top it off.
My dessert was a little less inspired, particularly compared to all the creme brulees with little biscuits and sorbet – perhaps they hadn’t planned I would make it this far. Despite my initial disappointment, the flavour of the sorbets (cherry and raspberry from memory?) was beautiful, and the lovely seasonal berries were juicy and ripe, a great clean end to a meal.
We spent a good few hours enjoying our meals and drinks and chatting away, and I think everyone walked away happy and satiated and ready for a GU (that’s guts up in our family!). I can definitely recommend Veraison to anybody looking for an enjoyable, quality meal in a beautiful yet relaxed atmosphere.
269 Myers Rd, Balnarring
Thurs – Mon – 12pm – 3pm
Open 7 days all Jan – 12pm – 3pm
Fri & Sat – 6pm – 11pm