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Townsville Bulletin - - The Goss - Br­uschetta w char grilled veg­eta­bles, mar­i­nated fetta & pesto ($ 14). Oys­ter Bay Cu­vee Brut, Marl­bor­ough, New Zealand $ 8

EAN Pe­drotti is ex­cited about his new menu at Su­ga­train in Palmer Street. Hav­ing been in Townsville for two years, he reck­ons he’s got a han­dle on what Townsville din­ers like and how they like it and this is how he’s de­signed the menu.

Born in Bal­larat, he did his ap­pren­tice­ship at GC’s cafe in the chilly city and has been grad­u­ally work­ing his way north since, via Mel­bourne and the Gold Coast and then on Hamil­ton Is­land which, he said, was a big in­flu­ence.

‘‘ We used to have the Great Bar­rier Feasts and the best chefs would come from all over Aus­tralia to cook them. I learned a lot there and I re­ally loved it.’’

Two years ago he was of­fered the job in Townsville, a place he had never vis­ited and he jumped at the chance.

‘‘ I love the weather, I love be­ing warm a nd I r e a l l y l i ke t he life­style,’’ he said.

Al­though ex­actly when he gets to en­joy it is any­body’s guess since he spends about 70 hours a week on the job.

Sin­gle, in his lim­ited free time he spends it play­ing gui­tar. ‘‘ It’s a hobby,’’ he said. ‘‘ But I would never give up cook­ing for mu­sic.’’

His new menu has been de­signed to suit Townsville palates, with old favourites de­liv­ered with a mod­ern twist and some se­ri­ously in­no­va­tive dishes as well.

His choice for the first course was his up­mar­ket ver­sion of br­uschetta which, in­stead of the tra­di­tional tomato top­ping, uses char-grilled egg­plant, mar­i­nated fetta and pesto.

‘‘ It’s a nice light start to the meal with a mix of good flavours to get the palate go­ing.’’ With it, Dean se­lected a glass of New Zealand’s Oys­ter Bay Cu­vee Brut.

As an en­tree he couldn’t go past quince jus. It’s a won­der­ful com­bi­na­tion of sweet and acidic, I re­ally like this one.’’

With the duck he chose a 2009 Devils Cor­ner Pinot Noir from Tas­ma­nia, a per­fect foil.

‘‘ I prob­a­bly wouldn’t need any dessert af­ter all that,’’ he said.

‘‘ But need­ing and want­ing it are quite dif­fer­ent and most peo­ple can al­ways fit in a Bai­leys creme brulee.’’

Served with toffeed pis­ta­chios and chocolate ice­cream this dessert is set off per­fectly by a glass o f 2 0 1 0 I n n o c e n t B y s t a n d e r Moscato.

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