Smoked tea egg with avruga and dill at Lee Ho Fook
Given Victor Liong honed his craft under chef Mark Best at Sydney’s Marque, it’s somewhat surprising that his signature dish is so, well, traditional. For his take on this classic Chinese snack, Liong steeps the eggs in a mix of pu-erh, long jing and jasmine teas. The result is a delicate flavour, perfectly offset by a dollop of salty avruga (a caviar substitute made from herring) on top of the still-gooey yolk.
92 Smith Street, Collingwood
63-degree egg with mushrooms, chorizo and Banyuls vinegar at Albert St Food and Wine
There are many upsides to eating out, but perhaps the best is trying dishes you probably couldn’t make for yourself at home. Cooked at a precise, low temperature for nearly an hour, Albert St Food and Wine’s 63-degree egg definitely falls into that category. At the Brunswick restaurant it is served with mushrooms, Istra chorizo and mellow Banyuls vinegar, sourced from the south of France.
382 Sydney Road, Brunswick
Peanut-crusted egg served with nam jim, betel leaf and pickled chillies at Industry Beans
Chef Jess Allen gently rolls a softly poached egg in a marinated mix of spring onion, pickled carrot and cucumber, before coating it in crushed peanuts and deep frying. “We challenged ourselves to lift the familiar flavour and texture of the humble egg to new places,” Allen says. Bite through the crisp shell and you’ll be greeted with a zing of nam jim before reaching the creamy yolk at the centre.
3/62 Rose Street, Fitzroy
Devilled eggs served with chives at Rockwell and Sons
In the 1970s no dinner party was complete without a tray of devilled eggs. Rockwell and Sons’ head chef, Casey Wall, has taken it upon himself to rescue the dish from the realm of kitsch. In a nod to his North Carolinian roots, Wall draws influence from the American South where they’re still a barbeque staple. Although these chive-topped snacks are designed to share, no one would blame you for polishing off a plate alone.
288 Smith Street, Collingwood
Quail scotch eggs with morcilla (black pudding) at Bellota
Another retro favourite revived with a thoughtful twist, Bellota head chef Danielle Rensonnet makes inspired use of earthy Spanish morcilla in place of the bland sausage called for in classic scotch egg recipes. Moreish and just a little indulgent, this is the ultimate bar snack for an after-work drink or as you work your way through the thousands of wines available from the adjoining Prince Wine Store.
181 Bank Street, South Melbourne
Smoked egg yolk with peas and souffletine at Merricote
Things get technical as head chef Rob Kabboord explains the method behind his smoked egg yolk – there’s talk of immersion circulators and smoke guns. He’s very straightforward, however, describing the joy he gets from making the dish. “When a table that orders it goes quiet when the lid comes off the jar,” Larboard says, “I think that is the greatest compliment a dish can get – silence because the guest are too busy enjoying.”
81 High Street, Northcote