JP Fiechtner, Shaun Quade and Sally Humble have worked at some of the best venues anywhere: Le Chateaubriand, Bo Innovation, Biota, Quay, Vue de Monde, Circa and Royal Mail Hotel. But at Lûmé the trio can give its imagination free reign.
The back part of Lûmé is 100 per cent degustation. It’s $140 for around 15 courses, plus another $140 for Humble’s matched wine. Officially, the dishes are a secret – diners are only given menus once the meal is finished.
Dishes Lûmé has served in the past include pickled quince (which looks like liver) and a duck parfait; a faux-truffle filled with mandarin and served on chocolate earth; and a cocoa-pod that bursts open, spilling petit fours on the table.
The front room is markedly more casual, with a sharp a-la-carte menu, wine by the glass, an unusual beer selection and a surprisingly broad spirits list. Nick Tessa, formerly of Gin Palace, is mixing drinks. There’s Madenii Vermouth on tap and a cocktails made with house-fermented sodas.
Dishes in the front room are simpler, though no less impressive. For $33 there’s a Hollyburton suckling pig; six different cuts have been cooked separately, pressed onto skin, and served with sautéed sprouts and steel-cut oats. The Cape Grim flat iron steak is served with coconut shards and mushroom. Starting in November, there's also a Prix Fixe Lunch, $60 for three courses.
Humble’s wine list is organised by region rather than variety. There’s a massive range of organic, biodynamic and just straight-up interesting bottles from all over the world.
The space is dressed in peach-coloured rendering and blonde wood, while tactical skylights provide an almost airy quality. The rear wall of the restaurant is entirely covered in edible herbs. It’s comfortable, inviting, warm and relaxing.