Shortgrain Canteen8-10 Hunt Street Surry Hills 2010
Around the corner and underneath Longrain.
Only open from 12 -3pm, you have get in early for a seat.
This a wonderful place for lunch if you’re after something special without the special price tag. Very affordable, very fresh, light and satisfying meals.
I love this trend of beautiful food for lunch on the run without having to endure a long lunch statis that often comes with good food.
With chef Martin Boetz heading up the kitchen you know that with the seasonal and changing menu, you’ll get a taste sensation.
With food inspired from asia, it all your favourites done really well.
A must to try,
Chargrilled pork neck with Chinese broccoli & peanut dressing $18
Massamun curry of beef $16
The pork neck is lovely and light and fresh.
And the beef isn’t swimming a bowl of sauce which I loved. A lovely thick curry, the perfect amount of sauce that doesn’t compromise its coconut flavour.
The dishes are one person serve, but I like sharing it all with a group and experience as many flavours as possible.
Large ceramic tangine pots, are well thought out, complimenting the simple but modern deco.
And of course the staff are fantastic.
A pop up restaurant in Circular Quay based on the enviro friendly place in Melbourne The Greenhouse. I could go into all the specifics about this place but there is so much information out there, you can find it out. These are just my thoughts. Ingeniously created using recycled material for everything including off cut pieces of wood as plates. I loved the jars as drinking glasses, and was fascinated by the serving presentation. The food was creatively simple, and not overly fussy. This is a wholistic experience where the diner should embrace the overall quality and the messages of recycling and upcycling. One that should not be missed , even if the environment isn't on your radar, its a wonderful view of the Harbour bridge and the Opera House. Get there before it closes at the end of the month, if only for a drink at the bar on the rooftop. The menu changes daily, but wood fired pizza is always there. We particularly enjoyed the chorizo, fried bread, roasted capsicum and a slow poached egg. Simple corn, with a cumin butter, WOW. It comes served in a jar, a wonderful blend of flavours, and in the jar its mixes perfectly. Not an expensive meal, $70 for two with a drink.
I loved the experience, hope you do too!
Union Hotel Newtown
King st Newtown (opp 549 king st)
Mon-Sun Lunch 12-3pm
This is a wonderful new surprise for the southerners of Newtown. My favourite pub bistro at the Carlisle have opened another. The trio of Ross Godfrey (also Osiliate Wildly), Chris Sharp (Stock Providore) and chef Michael Carter have done it again. Having only opened on the 4th August 2010, they are still finding their feet in terms of the interior. A little on the RSL side there are plans for barlinas, local artwork to line the walls and little softening to get a more intimate feel. The food is just as good as the Carlisle, and while the menu is not the same you will get a familiar feel. Panfried swordfish with chat potatoes, chorizo, spanish onion and horseradish ailoi $21.50, is but one example. I tried the chargrilled rare kangaroo loin with baby beetroot, roast sweet potatoe, silverbeet and pepper jus $22.50. Beautifully cooked, it melts in you mouth. The sweetness from the roasted vegies is a lovely compliment to this tender meat. The special board changes all the time and best to choose from. The set menu of classic food, such as burgers, salads are good, but get your socks knocked off by something on the special board. There is good little menu for the kids if you wanted to bring them and dine a little earlier, just bring them in through the bistro door. This place is already getting busy. Get in early and get a seat or you'll have to wait!
parramatta rd Annandale
dishes range from $3- $16
On saturdays and sundays head up to the Annandale between 12pm and 4pm for a delicious hangover lunch. This wonderful little hidden gem, has a sun drench courtyard with heaters for a lovely winter afternoon of relaxing, a beer and a nibble. This 'Pub Cha' has a menu of asian dishes that are not specific to one region. Dishes like chicken satay sticks, gado gado, prawn and spinach dumplings. I particularly liked the Fresh spring roll pork. A refreshing roll, that seems to be all of asia in one. I love that people are sprawled out on the footpath, there are families, and young people nursing hangovers. It's a cool place to be seen and a cool place to experience. It really is place to sit and enjoy an afternoon. I also enjoyed the fact that you could listen to music, especially the Annandale with its music scene, had a great selection going on in the background. Its something you don't get in a traditional yum cha restaurant. Although the menu isn't to adventurous it certainly will have something for everyone, it not boring and dull, but rather well thought out and of good quality.
68 Victoria rd
Yum Cha $2 - $16
Lamb Sandwich $16.50
What a surprise this place is. On a busy part of the road that isn’t easy for parking, it has a hidden courtyard out the back in which you forget where you are instantly. A nicely presented pub that doesn’t appear to more than it is, but the aromas wofting from the kitchen are mouth watering. The menu has its standard pub items, like steaks, ribs, but there is a slight asian inspiration even in these. The chips have been coated with a mixture of secret spices that are addictive. You can’t quite put your finger on all the spices that chef Raja Anand hand blends each day. The rest of the menu is very asian with yum cha plates in which each plate is beautifully presented with sauces and garnishes, not the traditional steam bamboo basket. Yum cha runs not only for lunch but also for dinner.
I tried the 7 hour lamb sandwich, which I later found out is their best seller. Selling 250 of these sandwiches a week, I now know why. Beautiful, tender lamb on lightly toasted bread, caramelised onions, lettuce and aioli. With the chips on the side, your taste buds are
having a party on their own.
I did find the wine by the bottle more expensive than other pubs in the inner west, and the 10 pm curfew in the courtyard a turn off. But I would go back again. I can see this place would be great for lunch, and the mid week dinner.
277 Australia St Newtown
Open Tue-Sun 7am-5pm
Baker Christopher The, former places of employment, Quay and most recently Claude's, brings high expectations. He certainly doesn’t disappoint. Authentic pastries full of butter, you can taste it. With an eclectic interior, designer stools mixed with church pews, designer tea cups with old cake stands and posters on the walls. Even coloured in drawings from local kids. Little delicious sweets on display on the counter such as gingerbread ninjas,strawberry tarts, and croissants. Freshly baked sourdough, lines the wall behind, along slide olive bread, and just beautiful looking bread that you want to eat it straight away. Coffee comes direct from boutique Balmain roasters, the Little Marionette, and I’m told is really good coffee. A friend who is a barrister visits Blackstar just for the coffee. The tea is loose leaf and very nice but prefer Revolver Cafe Annandale tea, compared to the average cafe is still worlds ahead. I had the Lamb shank, red wine and veggie pie, with a strawberry tart for desert, and tea to slide it all down. I love lamb shanks so the choice was easy for me. It’s a lovely pie, pastry is perfect, and filling beautiful. The red wine is subtle, hint of rosemary and finely chopped carrots. The only thing I have to say is there was quite a sized piece of bone within my pie. I could have easily broken a tooth if I hadn’t been pulling apart the pie before I ate it. The strawberry tart which I had been eying off for months and restraining myself, was everything I expected it to be. Buttery, fresh strawberries, full of flavour and leaves you salivating for more. This visit I was given this rather funky looking tea cup. I have to say it looks great and is a great idea but was not comfortable to drink out of. I found liquid sat behind the rubber band and dripped over me. And the rubber band was not comfortable to hold. Bring back the teapot and tea cup. I’ve been visiting this place for takeaway tea for a while now and the service has never been terrible friendly, which has left another one of my friends vowing never to return. So don’t go expecting to much from the staff but the food is worth a visit.
478 Bourke st
Tuesday-Saturday from 6pm
mains $23.50 - $34
When walking into biStrodes immediately you are comfortable. The candles on the table give a soft and gentle light that is intimate, and yet there is a sophistication to this elegantly simple dinning room. There are couples out to dinner, business dinners, and groups of friends. I’ve eaten in biStrodes a number of times now and always there is an air of happiness. Everyone is laughing and good conversations can be heard. The food is classic english, that is simple and simply done well. I have had in the past in the roast chicken, with sides of vegetables, and you savour every mouthful. This time round I tried a new addition to the menu, Salt bush lambs neck curry with english spinach. It stands out on the menu, like its out of place, but the subtle indian spices gives this curry an authentic taste that isn’t over bearing. One that could fit quite comfortably on an english table. I love the use of the unusual cuts of meat, and after trying myself to cook lambs neck and how difficult it is to cut I appreciate it even more. This beautifully tender lamb has been cooked to perfection. The pear tartlet for desert, was divine! I creamy filling in a wafer thin pastry cup, topped with just a few thinly sliced pears, was so light it was like eating air. The best thing about biStrode is the portion sizes. Its enough for the big eater and small eaters like myself, I don’t walk out feeling like I’m about to explode. A very elegant restaurant that doesn’t boast pretension. This is a very special place, which if you’re looking to impress definitely will do the job.
291 Annandale st
Annandale 9555 4727
7 days a week, kitchen closes at 4pm
Meals $4.50 - $16
This cafe is full of atmosphere, character, and wonderful old world charm mixed with a little industrial finesse. This renovated old corner shop works beautifully with the wooden interiors and murals on the walls. Having only opened in September 2009, this place is very comfortable within its surrounds and regular customers are like long lost friends. Mixed matched chairs with the collections of old silver salt and pepper shakers on all the tables, beautiful china teacups and collected plates, none of which match but encapsulate everything about this cafe. The longer you sit in the cafe the more detail stands out and you see how much care has been put into the business. Like the wrought iron legs on the bench inside, or hand made muffins on the counter still in their tins
and different everyday.I particularly like the Pocketed bacon and egg roll with rocket and three awesome sauces. The sauces of which you get all three, not a choice of, spiced tomato relish, lemon hollandaise and four herb salsa verde. Divine! All sauces are handmade, and most food inside the cafe is all made on the premises. I'm not a coffee drinker, but have been told that it is lovely coffee from a trained barista. I'm a tea drinker, and that is what makes this place extra special. Loose leaf tea, in teapots, in china cups! You even get a little timer so that you know when it is perfectly brewed. Organic tea, with classic flavours or something different like Forest Fruit consisting of blueberry, elderberry, black currant, strawberry, apple and almonds. Soon you will be able to order tea in Royal Albert cups 1893 for a lovely experience.
I love this place. A definite breakfast experience.
Bayswater rd Kings Cross
If you're looking for a place to have a cocktail and a tasting plate this a wonderful place to relax with with friends. A comfortable place filled with cushions and dark interior with splashes of colour, doesn't feel like a night club but has a sense of elegance which they are trying to capture with the 1920's feel.The cocktails are carefully made and the choice of glasses is what sets them apart from other cocktails lounges. I tried the Passion Tru, pomegrante juice, passion fruit and a hint of fresh mint with vodka. Beautiful! The tasting plates range from $10- $22 and have a selection of cheeses, a Bangalow sweet pork pate and foie gras to mix things up and of course fresh oysters with lemon and eschallot vinegar. A nice range of favours that are unique and go well with an elegant cocktail or even just a simple beer. There is a beautiful selection of champagnes, special spirits and imported beers. Whatever the occasion The Lincoln will have a drink to suit. The front is open which is lovely and airy but can be closed on a rainy night, which would be just a lovely. A venue that would be wonderful for a cocktail party or just a special catch up with friends.
Spice I am
Tel: (02) 95295444
440 Rocky Point Road
An institution of the St George region, Chez Pascal will be celebrating his 24th year in the area this September. So popular is he that the month long celebrations are already nearly booked out. Chez Pascal moved to this new location only 2 years ago and what a difference. With murals on the walls of dancing Can Can girls and little features throughout definitely lets you know that you’re in a french restaurant. Still with the feel of the old restaurant, this new location is more contemporary, refreshingly light, and more suited to the Australian dining experience.I ordered the Braised ox cheeks, Joue de Boeuf. The subtle hints of orange puts a smile on your face. A wonderfully rich dish that isn’t as heavy as traditional red wine sauce’s. This ox cheek falls beautifully onto your fork, and melts in your mouth. Potato mash is silky smooth in texture, buttery with a perfect amount of garlic.
Most evenings chef Philipe Lebreux will come out after the peak of service and loudly cry-”Is everybody happy”, he wanders the room speaking to old friends who have visited for years and new patrons. If you’re lucky he even hands out red roses to all the women in the room.I will be booking in ahead for next years 25th Birthday celebrations, and advise everyone to try Chez Pascal before the end of the year. Book Ahead!
Spice I am
90 Wentworth AveSurry Hills
Entrees from $7.90
Mains from $13.90
Desserts from $6.90
BYO no corkage
Having heard so much about this restaurant, I have to say I had high expectations walking in. We arrived at 6pm on the dot and by 6.20pm the restaurant was full and a queue had already formed. Looking around at its location, not ideal, traffic and budget accommodation next door. However it all quickly fades away when the friendly service arrives. The menu is exciting with regular dishes for the non adventurous.
I loved the crispy chicken when I was traveling around Thailand a year ago. So straight away the Basil crispy chicken, was on order. I was told to try the pork belly, Crispy pork belly was the other dish, both specialities. I like it a little hot , but when they say chilli in the, stir fried chilli,Thai holy basil,topped with crispy holy basil, they mean chilli. The dishes haven’t been dumbed down for the aussie palette, they stay true to the genuine Thai flavours. I did find the fish sauce a little over bearing, but I do a have sensitivity to this flavour. The pork belly was like nothing else I had ever tried. Crispy little squares, coupled with the fresh chinese broccoli, a little oyster sauce was a lovley combination. My favourite for the night.
I loved that it was BYO and without corkage, such a rarity these days. Its good food and when dinning with friends a good conversation, makes for a perfect evening.
The staff were very attentive, even if it was to rush you along to keep the queue down out the front, we didn’t feel too rushed.
Not a place to celebrate a special occasion or first date, but definitely a place for catchup dinners or a relaxed date night for couples.