Lake House, Daylesford

Lake House, Daylesford wasn't really one of our planned stops. We made a last minute decision in car and placed an online booking for lunch in 2 hours' time. Having heard plenty about Lake House, from its luxurious hotel with picturesque surroundings to its critically acclaimed restaurant, I was thrilled to finally sample some of its fine dishes.

Truth be told, dining is rather expensive ($76 for two courses) and it is known that their dishes are petite. However, it is evident that the emphasis is placed on fine quality local produce, exquisite flavours and beautiful plating.

I had the quail for my entrée, and while it was juicy and tender, I didn't feel that it was particularly outstanding.

My friend had the kingfish on a bed of soba, interspersed with edamame beans.

I had the hapuka for my main, and this was the highlight of my lunch. Cooked to perfection, every bite of the fish was so soft and almost melt in the mouth. The wild mushrooms were a beautiful touch to the dish, and added some extra texture and flavour without taking away the limelight from the hapuka. After a somewhat ordinary entrée, this dish definitely lifted my spirits back up.

I'm personally not a big fan of beef cheek, but my friend thoroughly enjoyed it as her main.

It was a fine experience, but I think I was ever so slightly underwhelmed as my expectations had been set very high. For a restaurant held in such high regard, I was expecting nothing less than exceptional. While the food was definitely of high standard, I found the service adequate but aloof. I would certainly recommend it especially if you haven't been, but I wouldn't be in a hurry to come back myself.

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