Full of good cheer from a stellar Sunday show at the Sydney Opera House, I directed my party to the chilly Republic 2 courtyard, determined to finally try Lucio’s Pizzeria. My beautician Vera from the neighbouring V Beauty reckons his Chocolate Tortino is one of the three best things “you will ever have in your mouth… it saves you a trip to Italy!” Sadly Owner/Chef Lucio De Falco is presently in Italy, so we diverted to the new Thai next door. With barely a night under their belt here, the kitchen produces an excellent signature Crispy Fried Pork ($17.90). The pork belly pieces are crunchy against a salty oyster sauce with the intensity broken up by Chinese broccoli. It goes well with a gently garlicky bowl of Garlic Fried Rice with Egg ($5.50). After one plate of Pad Si Iew with Tofu ($14.90) I am prepared to never order Pad Thai ($12.90-$18.90) again! The short fat rice noodles are soft and fresh; the tofu squares are ethereally light; the perfectly blanched vegetables are crisp, with juicy zucchini pieces bursting on the palate. It’s all pulled together by a compelling (almost meaty) sweet black bean sauce with egg – very satisfying on a cold winter eve.
Courtyard, Republic 2, 50 Burton Street, Darlinghurst
Ph: (02) 9331 3525