Donut and Beer Fest VIP launch event (Invited)

Friday, August 18, 2017 Sharon Halim 0 Comments

Donut and Beer Fest VIP launch event surely know how to pick their venue. Bar Manchuria is a perfect place to host if you want your event to be on fleek. It's attractive and strategically located in the middle of Melbourne CBD. Reachable by all kind of transport.

After traipsing around the dark lane for ages, I finally spotted the highly discreet 'Manchuria' sign and went up the equally ominous looking stairs to the launch of the donut festival. The place really does look like those speakeasy bars in old mafia Hong Kong movies!

We found our seats and grabbed a beautiful glass of the Last Love cocktail* that had rose petals on top. Not being a fan of rosey florally type drinks, I was pleasantly surprised by the subtlety of the rose syrup in the drink. The kick of the alcohol went really well with it.

The beer was crafted specifically for this event alone. Since the donuts are sweet, the beer was designed to still work, despite the glucose drenched palate. One can tell, from the first sip, that this is not the beer that one can get from your local alcohol supply. Though it has the body you would expect from an amber, the unique nutty flavour screams artistinal.

A food rescue platter. It is real wake up call at the scale of food waste the city is committing. This taste at least as good, if not more, than your typical quick lunch establishment in Melbourne. I was expecting them to be dry, or mushy, but they are as fresh as … fast food. Which is not perfect, but still a shame to be in needing of rescue.

Now on to the donuts! The first one I tried was Doughut Time's Donutella Versace (the names of these donuts are just sooo puntastic). It was more cake then donut with a very dense, brownie like texture to it. It was so decadent, almost guiltily so, with its generous nutella centre. It is sweet but luckily not too much - you can't go wrong with nutella so this was my favourite donut of the night! There was also Nuts about Tella's donut entry: the Leaning Tella of Pisa and it was also nutella based. But it really wasn't a donut as it was tiny pitas smeared with nutella that were gathered together. Still pretty good though.

Next up on the list was the Holy Bombolina's Maple Coconut Crumble Pie Donut. It is a very long name. I don't really like strong maple flavours so this one was a bit much for me. The texture is perfect though, much fluffier than the dense Donutella Versace.

Dandee Donut's Original Jam Donuts were the only traditional donuts on the tasting table! It has a nice in between texture between dense and airy. I love how the jam was not too sweet, and just had the right amount of tartness.

Honey Dew Lukumades. This is my favourite. It tastes like a westernised Chinese donut. Not the 'cakwe’ one, but the 'kue bantal’ one. Puffy, but not too sweet, you can keep on eating it. It's definitely Greek style donut.

By this point, I was feeling a little sick from all the sugar so I settled in for my last donut for the night - Ostrich and the Egg's The Garden Route. The donut itself has South African roots - a type of donut called the koeksisters. The donut has a generous sprinkle of pistachio which I loved and a nice spice-mix fused into the donut itself. Nutty and sweet. The bounciness was fine. It taste as sticky sweet as the dark glaze shows. Unfortunately, it was not sticky enough to trap as much crumbles as per my preference, and too sweet to actually taste the nuts.

Once again, Donut and Beer Fest proved to be exciting and fun. It's coming again for public this weekend at the Batman Royale, the 19th-20th August with two session per day; 11am-3pm & 4pm-8pm. Quickly buy your ticket at their website; general $15, group of four $45 and children under 12 years old can enter for free.

Manchuria Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
+6139663 1997
5-7 Waratah Pl
Melbourne VIC 3000