Number One Wine Bar with three work friends: Lustm, Catfish and Giuseppe.
Friday, 29 October 2010
Sunday, 24 October 2010
|Hyde Park Barracks by Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar)|
|Bilson's by Monica|
Cocktail of the Month
Gourmantic (Gourmantic) is drank up at Monkey Magic with a cocktail made with gin, cucumber, honey and absinthe.
Hats Off Dinner
Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar) made it to one of the famous Hats Off dinners, this one on Nouvelle Cuisine at Bilson's Restaurant. Some pretty tasty photos.
|Thelma & Louise Mademoiselle Délicieuse (Spoon, Fork & Chopsticks)|
D (Here Comes The Food) had a great meal at Efendy, Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar) tried out the 'sunny' Hyde Park Barracks Café, Mademoiselle Délicieuse (Spoon, Fork & Chopsticks) experienced a north-side brunch at Thelma & Louise Café and Penguin (Penguin Says Feed Me) staked out Café Ish.
Let's Do Lunch
It's tagine at Sean's Kitchen by Aimee (Aimee Chanthadavong) and crispy-skinned chicken at my own lunching experience at Guillaume at Bennelong.
It was a village atmosphere at the Summer Hill Grand Food Bazaar by Lisa (Lisa Perkovic)
Pub Grub Pies
One of the little known additions to this year's festival is the interesting pub pie special which I have been spending quite some time searching out. First at the Lord Nelson Brewery and then a Balmain and Rozelle pub pie crawl visiting the Riverview Hotel, the Welcome Hotel, the Royal Oaks Hotel and the 3 Weeds.
|Tomislav by Billy (A Table for Two)|
Franz (Australian Gourmet Pages) had a great time at the Young Chefs Dinner at Rockpool Bar & Grill , Jane (Jane Cooks Live) supported sustainable cooking at the 10 Mile Dinner at Dank Street Depot while Billy (A Table for Two), Suze (Chocolate Suze) and Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar) were all at the amazing Just Desserts dinner at Tomislav. I have my eye on this restaurant. It looks fantastic.
|Grace Hotel by Ffichiban (Here Comes The Food)|
These dessert plates are still as popular as they are every year with visits to Bacco Chifley Plaza by Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar), The Westin by Aimee (Aimee Chanthadavong), Azuma Patisserie by Lee (The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry), Monkey Magic by Gourmantic (Gourmantic) and a strong effort put in by Ffichiban (Here Comes The Food) with three hits in one night at the Grace Hotel, Bacco & Shangri-La Hotel
Talk & Taste
The bubbly Jayne (Champagne Jayne) posted a video on her subject of passion and expertise, champagne.
|Grace Hotel by Minh (Eat Show and Tell)|
The Malaysian Food Festival at the Grace Hotel posted by Minh (Eat Show and Tell) looks like quite an experience and is open for lunch and dinner.
If I missed your post or you want to join next week's round-up, read this post to find out how.
The next (and last) round-up will be posted Sunday 31st October. Better get eating!
|Hyde Park Barracks by Monica (Love My Foods & Sugar)|
Who ate all the pies?
Well at least I ate the ones on our Pub Pie Crawl through Rozelle and Balmain today.
Five friends sent out on a journey of pie discovery, traipsing the streets in the cold and rain to discover who is offering the best pie out of all the amazing pubs of Balmain and Rozelle.
As part of the Crave Sydney International Food Festival, pubs around Sydney are offering a pint of Coopers Pale Ale and a special pie for $20.
I’d already tried the beef and mushy peas pie from the Lord Nelson Brewery, but today was an attempt on the six pies offered in the Balmain and Rozelle area.
Our first stop, the London Hotel and their Lamb Shank Pie, was vetoed by Jonas and M.E. who both don’t like lamb. Boo hoo. I love lamb. Oh well.
And unfortunately we ran out of time and didn’t try the Rabbit & Porcini Pie at Dicks Hotel. Another missed opportunity as later a waitress at our winning pie pub told us Dick’s pie is also particularly good.
From the four pies we tried, every pie was given a score out of 5, as voted by me, Jonas, M.E., Shamu and Tombolina, with the highest possible score a perfect 25.
We had some generous voters (Shamu) and some harsh voters (M.E.). Here are the results.
Wild Hare Pie (9.5 out of 25)
3 Weeds (193-197 Evans St, Rozelle)
With all the praise lavished on the 3 Weeds bistro, this was the pie that I thought would be the best. Surprisingly, it turned out to be the worst.
It looked delicious, a huge oval of golden pastry, but one you stabbed into this pot pie with a fork the pastry lid turned out to be very thin and inside was a shallow layer of watery stew rather than thick gravy and meat.
In fact, of the two pies we shared each had only one small fragment of hare meat and the rest of the filling was made up of carrot and potato.
The boys did say the carrot and hare combo got a point for irony, but overall it was a poor effort and very disappointing for such a renowned foodie pub.
Pale Little Duck Pie (15.5 out of 25)
Royal Oak Hotel (36 College St, Balmain)
This was our first stop and the pie was completely encased in perfectly cooked pastry. The interior was dense with shredded duck meat that wasn’t at all runny.
It was very well presented, atop a mountain of mash and spinach leaves and although it was good, it’s didn’t hit you in the face with flavour.
Shamu and I really liked this pie for its subtly (Shamu rated it her second favourite), whereas Tombolina, M.E. and Jonas wanted more of a flavour smackdown.
Coopie Chicken Pie (19 out of 25)
Welcome Hotel (91 Evans St, Rozelle)
This one really hit the spot. We cooed over the huge pot pie covered with thick, flaky pastry and a side of cream sweet corn.
Once we broke through to the filling we were met with gooey, oozing cheese-smothered chicken. It was delicious.
The serve was very generous, so the boys liked it, but Shamu got a few mouthfuls of gristle so that took a few points off.
Berkshire Pork & Apple Cider Pie (22 out of 25)
The Riverview Hotel (29 Birchgrove Rd, Balmain)
This was our winner!
We came to the Riverview just after 3pm and were turned away as the kitchen had closed for lunch service. It was a bit upsetting watching the tasty-looking pie being served to other tables and initially we had this pub down as “pie fail”, but after our disappointing 3 Weeds experience we trekked back to the Riverview to give it a go.
I’m glad we did. Everyone unanimously gave it their top score.
The pie was very beautifully presented with mash and mushy pies, and a blob of wonderful Dijon mustard on the side.
The pastry was crusty on top but softer on the sides, and once you broke into the centre a luscious aroma of pork wafted out. The filling was chunky, flecked with darker pink pieces of ham and moist and sweet from the apple cider. A perfect match to the mustard.
It was a gourmet pie and tasted truly superb, definitely worth $20. Even if it was smaller than the chicken pie, the flavour was much more sophisticated.
22 oinks and our winner!
If you want to go on your own Rozelle & Balmain pie pub crawl, here’s a helpful Google map to help you make it happen. You’ve got one more week and one more weekend to do it!
View 2010 Pub Pie Crawl in a larger map
Saturday, 23 October 2010
|Nice view . . . of the amazing butter!|
Cautiously I walk down the stairs towards the reception desk and am almost bowled over by some overly excited middle-aged women. From cavernously empty, the restaurant is suddenly alive with a flood of people coming up the stairs from within the depths of the Opera House.
I realise they have just opened their doors and I have somehow come in “the back”. Oopps.
I was supposed to be having my third Let’s Do Lunch with Stinky, but she had to work.
Hey, don’t go feeling too bad for her just yet! She’s a travel agent and her “work” consisted of a free week in the USA visiting LA, the Grand Canyon, Joshua Tree National Park and Las Vegas. Tough life.
Instead of giving up the booking, Tia Bicky and I decide to live it up with a nice lunch together in civilised surrounds. They give us a pretty good table, with a partial view of the Harbour Bridge. No complaints here.
The wait staff are all extremely friendly. Everyone smiles and greets us. Everyone.
While we chat about the skyrocketing prices of houses in Newtown (Bicky & Robot are trying to buy), soft slices of perfectly crusted sourdough are set down with beautiful salty butter. I could eat a slab of that butter on its own.
Roasted free-range chicken breast with a tombe of silverbeet on a bed of cauliflower puree, olives and lemon confit jus
The chicken was cooked wonderfully, a crispy skin covering juicy meat without even a hint of dryness. The silverbeet provided an iron-flavour, counter balancing the sweet tomato and the velvety purée. The jus lifted the dish from being too heavy while the smear of olive tapenade gave a rich flavour. Just superb.
|Baby beans with pistachio pesto|
That means dessert!
Although a few of the al a carte desserts tickle my fancy, Bicky is trying to reduce her cholesterol so we opt for petit fours instead. Oh woe, life over age thirty!
The petit fours ($8) turn out to be the perfect choice. There’s actually 6 tasty treats for us to try and they are all delicious.
I will present them to you in ascending order of greatness:
|Strawberry & Vanilla Cream Tarts|
We leave full, satisfied and ready to walk back to work, uphill in heels in the heat.
But I'm tough :)
Thursday, 21 October 2010
Monday, 18 October 2010
Ali Beggs texted me last night to say I must be reading her mind.
Radish & Broad Bean Salad w Green Tahini Sauce
Recipe by Yotam Ottolenghi. Serves 4.
500g shelled broad beans, fresh or frozen
Salt and black pepper
4. Mix with the broad beans, onion, coriander, preserved lemon, lemon juice, parsley, olive oil and cumin. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Note: you can see from our photos we decided to add some spring peas too.
Green Tahini Sauce
150ml tahini paste
80ml lemon juice
30g flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped if making by hand
2. If making by hand, thoroughly whisk the tahini, water, lemon juice, garlic and salt together. Stir in the chopped parsley, then taste and add more salt if needed.
Sunday, 17 October 2010
|Penguin Says Feed Me|
Sydney food bloggers have been busy-busy-bees and here is the honey.
First up I want to share these great maps tracking festival events across Sydney, pulled together by one clever fox, Pamela (And Other Fancy Stuff).
Cocktail of the Month
Bacco Wine Bar Tina (Food, Boozes and Shoes)
|Citrus and Candy|
|Diary of a Ladybird|
One of the things I didn't get around to booking into was the excellent cooking classes held during this month.
bel mondo Master Class with Andy Ball Sheena (A Sticky Affair)
Tea & Dessert Matching @ Sweetness Pastisserie Jenny (Panda & Cakes)
Let's Do Brunch
Two more early rising bloggers headed out for festival breakfasts. Betty (The Hungry Girl) visited the Bitton Gourmet Cafe and while I headed off for an amazing meal at Efendy.
Let's Do Lunch
My sister and I spent a lovely afternoon at Aria whereas BiteMe (Bite Size Review) managed to clock in at Becasse and QVB Tea Rooms.
|Spicy Ice Cream|
|Eat, Show and Tell|
Video blogger, Yianni (Yianni's City Life), captured Turkey’s Musa Dagdeviren and chef Somer Sivrioglu whip up a Turkish feast Efendy.
Minh (Eat Show and Tell) was luck to experience the delicious artistry of Janice Wong @ Sepia.
Franz (Australian Gourmet Pages) managed to photograph every course at this once in a lifetime event from NY's wizz kid Wylie Dufresne and Aussie Brent Savage WD-50 & Bentley Dinner.
|Eat, Show and Tell|
Two bloggers enjoyed their dessert treat this week and both went to the InterContinental Hotel: Squishes (Eat Show and Tell) and Simon (Simon Food Favourites)
Some of the brightest and rising stars of the food world joined Australian experts to cook and discuss food over the last weekend. SBS Food recruited some bloggers for comprehensive coverage or you could search by interest: