Sunday, 17 January 2010

Utopia

If I had to pick an idyllic spot to live somewhere in the South-East Queensland/Northern New South Wales area, it would be in the lush green hills around Bangalow. It's such beautiful countryside - amazing views out over the ocean, only a short drive to the beach and best of all the town of Bangalow would be the local "metropolis". The town itself is fantastic - a really unique range of shops, some great restaurants & cafes, a butcher that sells Bangalow sweet pork and a small grocery store that stocks a quirky range of food that covers all the essentials.

Very very sadly, my bank balance doesn't allow me relocate to Bangalow just at the moment, so we have to make do with short visits instead. I've already written an earlier post about Utopia, but we popped in again on our last trip and had such a memorable morning tea that it would be mean not to share it with you.

One of the reasons I keep going back to Utopia is because they always have a selection of gluten free cakes. So many cafes around Brisbane mistakenly seem to think that having a couple of friands or a Byron Bay gluten free cookie is all you need to keep gluten free customers happy. Luckily places like Utopia are 10 steps ahead of the pack, always offering a good selection, which usually makes my job of ordering pretty tough. Not only are there always a good selection of cakes and pastries, but they are all cooked on the premises.

On this occasion I couldn't go past the lemon curd boat. As you'd guess from the name, this was a pastry shell in the shape of a boat, filled with lemon curd. The pastry was lovely & crisp, but held together well (a rarity for gluten free pastry). The filling was the complete opposite - slightly runny and very tangy. The pastry boat was served with a slice of lime and some creme Anglaise. I'd have to say that the lemon curd boat was the best gluten free pastries I have eaten for a long, long time. After it disappeared off my plate and I'd cleaned up all the delicious creme Anglaise, I seriously thought about ordering another. I only stopped because I knew we were driving down to Byron for lunch, and wanted to leave room for a serve of nachos from Ozymex (which are my favourite nachos anywhere).

My wife ordered a mascarpone tart with passionfruit curd, which looked equally as impressive as the lemon curd boat. The base of the tart contained plenty of coconut, and was filled with a lovely light, tangy mascarpone. The tart was generously drizzled with passionfruit curd and was another memorable morning tea staple. Of course my lemon curd tart was better, but I'd happily eat one of these any day (even if I couldn't eat the base).

We each had a flat white, made with Zentveld's coffee. They were both good coffees, and were served with a little biscuit on the side of the saucer.

If you've never been to Bangalow, make a trip there one of your new year's resolutions. You can start the day with coffee and morning tea at Utopia, wander around the shops for a few hours (make sure you visit the very cool Japanese gift store) and then have a late lunch at Ate or Fresca on the deck of the Bangalow Hotel. High on our travel agenda this year is a weekend at Bangalow. Not only would I love to have morning tea and lunch at Utopia, I'm very keen to try out the degustation dinner at Satiate, which sounds like an absolute bargain at $65.

In the meantime, if anyone's selling any cheap properties in the hills of Bangalow, please think of me...

Utopia
13 Byron Street
Bangalow NSW 2479
P - 02 6687 2088
E - utopia.bangalow@gmail.com
W - http://www.utopiacafe.com.au/

Utopia Cafe Restaurant on Urbanspoon

10 comments:

Gastronomy Gal said...

Wow- self control- managing to not eat the base!!

Barbara said...

Great post, I haven't been to Utopia for a couple of years. Might call in next week on a trip south.

Adrasteia said...

Nice to see a mention of your blog in the Courier Mail! Well deserved!

Sarah said...

We went to Utopia early last year. Great breakfast-top notch. But terrible, terrible coffee. Dunno what kind of beans they were using when we were there. Maybe you were luckier with yours!

Ladybird said...

mmm.. i'd love to have a lemon curd bath - yummo!

bokka said...

I don't think that's creme anglaise, which is typically a thin runny custard.... maybe chantilly cream?

food bling, Brisbane said...

thanks very much Adriesta - slowly taking over the world :)

food bling, Brisbane said...

Sarah - maybe you're just more of a coffee connoisseur than I am, or maybe you had a work experience guy/girl on coffees that day :)

food bling, Brisbane said...

Bokka - there was piped whipped cream on the top and side of the boat, but the creme Anglaise was on the plate under the boat (you can just see it in the picture). I love creme Anglaise, so I mopped it all up and left the piped cream on the plate.

food bling, Brisbane said...

Barbara - Utopia is definitely worth a detour (I'm sure you'll need morning tea on your trip)