If a restaurant is brave enough to put just three desserts on their menu, they’d better be three damn good desserts. I want to be torn apart by the selection, to the point where I insist that my dining partner and I order separately because I can’t bear the idea of not getting to taste everything.
Lukshon restaurant has one of these menus. They offer a scant three choices for dessert – which I suppose is unsurprising, given that their entire dinner menu comprises just 18 dishes, including sides.
If I have the choice of just three sweet ways to end my meal, I don’t want to look at the options and decide that they just don’t sound worthy of the calories, price or extra time needed to order, wait and eat (especially when the consequence of that extra time is a longer wait until I can collapse under my duvet).
There is an old phrase “the proof is in the pudding” – and I guess that Lukshon’s creative and innovative menu can be summed up through their delectable sounding dessert menu.
The chosen 3 are:
A warm persimmon toffee cake, featuring sichuan persimmon jam, brown butter ice cream, long pepper crumble and hibiscus;
A ginger and lemongrass pudding, served with compressed yuzu fruit, a five spice jus and granny smith sorbet; and
Coconut and dark chocolate “rocks” accompanied by passion fruit, chocolate black pepper crumble and a toasted coconut sand.
These desserts can be accompanied by a choice of single origin teas or a Vietnamese style coffee, which can be served hot or cold.
I don’t even know where to start. This menu speaks to me on so many levels – as a committed tea drinker, I am delighted to see such a delicious choice of single origin teas available. As a curious diner with an insatiable desire to paint my palate with the flavours of the world, I am intrigued by the flavour combinations on offer. As a pastry chef, dessert is what I do: the range of techniques involved in creating these offerings is impressive, to say the least. Hmmm. Decisions, decisions. This is a conundrum I’ve faced many times in my food life – I am at a loss as to what I should choose, how to best indulge my sweet tooth and treat myself this time. I know, I know – in the grand scheme of things, a seemingly trivial choice like what to have for dessert doesn’t compare to having to decide how to distribute a country’s international aid budget or perform life-saving operations on destitute orphans. But in this moment, it’s a crucial choice and I am stuck in the moment, unable to resolve this complex dilemma.
And complex it is, for the diverse choice of flavours available in just three plates of food is stupefying. The unique texture and subtle sweetness of persimmon, combined with the nutty undertones of brown butter and bittersweet floral notes of hibiscus sounds devastatingly tempting, and I don’t know what long pepper crumble is but am aching to find out. Ginger and lemongrass are a classic, clean-flavoured combination of delicate fragrance and distinct flavour, and the warm aromatics promised by a five spice jus, exotic depths of compressed yuzu fruit and contrasting tartness of granny smith apples in anything, especially an icy cold sorbet, sounds like a tantalisingly wonderful combination. Buttery rich coconut and decadent bittersweet chocolate are one of my all time favourite combinations – paired with tangy, vibrant, floral passion fruit and undercut by the mellow subtlety of toasted coconut, they sound even more delicious. I do not known what a chocolate black pepper crumble is, but it sounds like it lends a sensual warmth to a fairly brightly-flavoured plate of food.
I am at a loss. The potential for deliciousness in every dessert plate on offer here is tempting and tormenting all at once, but I can’t justify ordering three desserts… can I?