With stunning floor-to-ceiling windows, Essence Restaurant at the Melbourne Marriott Hotel capitalises on its central corner location offering sensational street-views to diners. In keeping with its aim to impress, the restaurant’s design boasts a contemporary flair – decorated in hues of chocolate and finished with comfy suede-back chairs and banquettes.
Chef Clinton Jackson, formally of the Surfers Paradise Marriott, heads the kitchen at Essence, offering a succinct menu studded with the restaurant’s signature dishes. A roasted beetroot salad, plated with walnuts, caramelised shallots, fetta cheese and a honey-thyme vinaigrette is tangy and flavourful, while a seafood stack for two comes highly recommended, displaying both hot and cold servings of Western Australian prawns, steamed New Zealand mussels, freshly shucked oysters, blue swimmer crab, Tasmanian salmon and salt and pepper calamari. Steaks are sourced from local Victorian farms and are served in a delicate pepper rub with perfectly cut chips on the side. The crispy-skin salmon, said to be Essence’s star dish, impresses with its sweet manuka honey soy dressing, crunchy asparagus and kipfler potatoes. The wine list features a good selection of wines by the glass, with a focus on Victorian and Western Australian varieties, while a range of premium champagnes and Australian sparkling are available for celebrating.
Desserts are a highlight at Essence and its hot chocolate fondant served with an orange salad and sorbet certainly makes a mark in any foodie’s culinary conscience. This dish has been a firm favourite at Essence since and after just one mouthful, it is easy to understand why. If diners are rushing to get to a show, a theatre menu is also available in two- or three-course express options, while sharp service ensures that your opening curtain will not be missed.
Read more about Essence Restaurant here