For our wedding anniversary, we decided to try Vie at Versace‘s $49 three course lunch special.  We were big fans of Vie years ago, until they seemed to drop the ball.  We’d heard that they were back on top with a new menu and chef, so wanted to give it a try.  The verdict?  Good, but our desserts were the highlight.

Sime rang ahead to book and told them it was our anniversary, so we were seated in a lovely table for two at the front of the restaurant overlooking the water.  The restaurant opened at 12, and when we arrived at 12 there were already two tables seated, plus a large table set for a booking.  Good to see them busy on a weekday lunch.

Our waiter was friendly, and took our drink order.  We had some sparkling water, and a glass of Domaine Chandon (which I was super excited about having a small sip of, I haven’t had a wine or champers in 4 months!).  We perused the menu while our drinks arrived.  Now I know I’m being picky (to quantify that: we’re both ex 5-star hotel and restaurant waiters), but he did carry a glass in his hand (I was always trained that glassware or cutlery should always be on a tray) and then lean over me to pour my water which sort of interrupted our conversation.  Nevertheless, he was friendly and efficient.

We each ordered three courses off the special $49 lunch menu which sounded promising.  Our bread arrived, fresh from the oven and was delicious.  Served with a tasty dukkah blend and some lovely extra virgin olive oil and balsamic, it was a nice way to start our meal.

Our entrees arrived – Sime had the prosciutto, persimmon, pine nuts and baby rocket.  The waiter explained that the chef was waiting on fresh prosciutto to be delivered, and asked if Sime minded having Sopressa instead – all good. Sime said that his meal was nice, just some basic flavours, so all in all OK but nothing special.

I was really looking forward to my fennel seed crusted haloumi, compressed watermelon, tzatziki veloute.  My dish arrived, and the waiter poured the veloute around the centrepiece – the haloumi on watermelon.  First impressions were – where was my fennel seed crust?  When eating the dish I managed to find 3 fennel seeds and not much fennel flavour.  On my first bite I was also a bit puzzled, warm cheese, cold watermelon, cold veloute.  The veloute had a wonderful flavour, but overall it was a strange warm-cold combo.  The watermelon did have a concentrated flavour but looked like a chunk of watermelon soaked in watermelon juice.  The cheese was cooked well and was a lovely flavoured haloumi, but the dish fell a bit flat for me.

On to our mains, Sime ordered the line caught fish of the day (in this case salmon), fennel barigoule, brown butter puree, lemon viniagrette.  The salmon was perfectly cooked, down to the delicious crispy skin.  Sime said he was hoping for a stronger fennel flavour with the accompaniments, and ended up leaving some of these as he felt the flavour combinations were a bit strange.

My main was the roasted chicken breast, smoked almond crust, light potato salad, grilled spring onion.  Perfectly cooked chicken with great flavour, and the slab of smoked almond crust was divine.  In fact, combining the almond, chicken and grilled spring onion was lovely.  The potato salad itself was a traditional blend of potato, capers, pickles and mayo.  The dish also had two pieces of tomato which were cooked, skinless but served cold with a sort of light vinegary flavour – again, good for the colour but strange accompaniment.  The accompaniments sort of felt a bit retro and weird with something more contemporary like smoked almond crust.

Lastly, to dessert.  Sime chose the vie seasonal brulee (chai), caramelised crust.  It arrived looking perfect, and he said it was delicious.  A hard, crispy toffee crust and a sweet, creamy chai flavoured custard beneath.  I also had a taste – it was good, so good that he pretty much scraped the plate.

For me – the roasted apple terrine, cinnamon cream, vanilla ice cream.  Again, amazing dessert!  The roasted apple was topped with a crunchy toffee crust (tick!), the ice cream had those lovely black dots of vanilla in it, and it was served atop a lovely crumble.  It was somewhat like a deconstructed apple pie.  Yum!

So overall, good service, but the entrees and mains were a bit of a disappointment.  We both left food on our plates with the mains as the accompaniments didn’t really cut it.  But – what awesome desserts!  We talked about it later and agreed if we had paid full price for these dishes (they are available on their normal menu) we would not have been happy.  Will we be back?  We’re not sure, we both agreed we’d prefer to try Allure at Currumbin again.

A final lovely touch – we told them it was our wedding anniversary, so the Assistant Restaurant Manager came over after our meal and gave us a card from the hotel and a small gift.  We were quite chuffed, this is something we’ve never seen before and like I said, a lovely touch.

Loo review: These guys get a 10/10 for their loos.  Always immaculately clean, piped music, thick hand towels, marble benches, creative lighting, even luxurious tap fittings.  I think this is my first 10/10… oh actually, Vue de Monde pretty much scooped the pool on this one with the view from the 55th floor… (and their absolutely amazing food… sigh).

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