We made two restaurant reservations a few weeks before our easter holiday in the South West. One was for The Goose in Busselton; the other was for Must Margaret River. It took us around 35 minutes to drive from Busselton to Margaret River for lunch on Easter Sunday.
Just like the night before at The Goose, Jac, Juji and Jay shared starters – first, one of the day’s specials, chicken liver and porcini mushroom parfait with duck jelly, served with toasted brioche (AU$22).
The parfait was topped with a layer of shiny savoury duck jelly.
I loved the look of the mini golden brioche toast.
Jac, Juji and Jay also shared a dozen freshly shucked Albany rock oysters natural, which were plump, briny and served with champagne and shallot vinegar (AU$40).
For my starter, I ordered the seared half-shell Fremantle scallops with hummus, confit tomato and pomegranate dressing (AU$27). On the plate were three plump scallops, each sitting on top of more than a mouthful of hummus and soft sweet confit tomato. The dressing on the scallops was quite subtle and I was a little disappointed there was no pomegranate visible on the plate. I’m not a huge fan of hummus but this combination with scallops was delicious and I left clean scallop shells behind. The scallops were delicate and tender but I’d have liked just a little more caramelisation on them. I laughed at myself, going all the way to Margaret River to eat Fremantle scallops!
The generous serving of complimentary baguette and butter was dangerously moreish. The bread was perfectly crusty and chewy and I greedily breathed in its wonderful aroma. I found myself reaching for my second, third, then fourth piece of baguette. The others enjoyed slathering the chicken liver and porcini mushroom parfait on that gorgeous bread.
For his main course, Jay chose the duck leg confit, corn puree and crispy black pig bacon with citrus salad and madeira jus (AU$40). This dish was flavoursome and full of textural pleasures: crispy skinned tender duck that fell off the bone, crackly crispy bacon and sweet smooth corn puree absolutely bursting with flavour.
Jac chose another starter dish as her main course, the very pink Margaret River wagyu beef carpaccio, salted yoghurt, pickled beetroot and herbs (AU$26). Pieces of pickled beetroot, thinly sliced almost translucent radish and micro herbs were scattered over ultra-thin slices of pink marbled raw wagyu beef. Jac wasn’t a fan of the salted yoghurt but the beef was superb and said she would’ve been just as happy with the beef on its own drizzled with olive oil, and none of the other garnishes.
Juji and I both ordered Must’s Butterfield burger, served with zucchini pickles, frites and aioli (AU$24). The burger is listed on Must’s “Local Regulars” menu, which features dishes showcasing local produce, including Western Australian dry-aged Butterfield beef from the Stirling Ranges.
Is it the in-thing to serve gourmet burgers and fries on wooden boards?
This was truly one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten. The sesame seed bun held together very well – regular TFP reader Jon would refer to this as a “hamburger strength” bun. There was plenty of fresh lettuce, tomato, homemade chutney, aioli, sliced red onion, salty stripy bacon and gooey Gruyere cheese melted on a beautifully charred beef pattie cooked to a juicy medium rare.
The frites were crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside. I usually prefer aioli or tomato sauce with fries but they tasted great dipped in the buttery bearnaise. The sweet and sour zucchini pickles were delicious – Jac thought so too and kept eating my pickles!
If you like burgers and are ever in Margaret River, this little beauty is a Must-try.
We also shared a salad of mixed green leaves with red wine vinaigrette (AU$7).
After all those great savoury courses we couldn’t resist having dessert. Jac and I ordered the cinnamon creme brulee with caramelised banana (AU$16) – yes, two brulees in less than 24 hours! Now this brulee had a satisfyingly crunchy toffee crust. The custard was a little softer than I expect in a creme brulee but it was deliciously cinnamony, with a layer of sweet cooked banana.
Jay and Juji ordered the Must raspberry bombe Alaska (AU$16), which looked like a beehive, garnished with balsamic blueberries (AU$16).
The Italian meringue was fluffy and chewy, the pink raspberry ice cream inside still frozen even after all our photo taking.
Jay and Juji washed down the sweetness with long macchiatos.
I took this photograph of the bar peeking through the wine racks next to our table. :)
I really liked the wine bottles recycled as lamp shades.
This was probably my favourite meal of our easter holiday. I’ll happily eat at Must again next time I’m in Margaret River. I’ve heard wonderful things about Must’s angel hair pasta tossed with blue manna crab, tomato, chilli, basil and cream…
Must Margaret River
107 Bussell Highway
Margaret River WA 6285
Telephone: (09) 9758 8877
Open 7 days from 12 noon to late
Must Margaret River on Facebook
The original Must Winebar is on Beaufort Street in Highgate, Perth.
One more easter holiday post to come! And then, a family feast!