Granted you could view this new Westfield Bondi Junction opening simply as an excuse not to schlep into the city from the Eastern Suburbs for your regular Cantonese fix, however if you scratch beneath the surface, there’s more than meets the eye.
I'm kicked back on The Vic's back deck, soaking up the sunshine and enjoying a wine when I catch the moment they first notice each other. I watch their playful interactions heat up before animalistic lust takes over and the pair threaten to consummate in the corner...
“John Laws had lunch at Otto today,” my UberX driver informs me when he sees my destination. I’m apparently his second trip to this famous waterfront spot - operated by The Fink Group, who also have Quay, The Bridge Room and Firedoor in their stable. With its reputation preceding it, I was surprised to find an accessible menu of every-day food, starting with vibrantly green asparagus, broad beans and peas hiding Buffalo Ricotta ($27).
Diving into an established all-male Italian kitchen as the new head chef could be daunting (especially as a half-English, half-Welsh woman) but Naomi Lowry has taken it in her stride. She’s maintained the menu’s confident Southern Italian focus, notching it up with Sardinian Fregola ($27/$35) resplendent with perfectly cooked cuttlefish, calamari, prawns and mussels, and topped with a generous helping of bottarga.
I spent 24-hours in Orange last weekend taking in some key events at the 2015 Orange Wine Festival. The highlight of my visit was the Barrel to Bottle Chardonnay masterclass at my favourite winery in the region: De Salis Wines. Winemaker Charlie Svenson was incredibly candid and generous with both his winemaking techniques, and with pouring his museum release wines.
Hotel restaurants are curious beasts; and while Abode has been cleverly located as a stylish, stand-alone restaurant, it is still very much part of the Parkroyal Darling Harbour. As you’d expect, the restaurant fulfils a role in providing accessible, comforting and familiar food to overnight stayers.
After hearing whispers about The Bach Eatery, I thought I’d pop down one Sunday evening, and see for myself what the hype surrounding ‘New Zealand cuisine’ was all about. The predictably trendy interior was actually very welcoming, and sitting at a high table to the side of the restaurant gave an almost ‘diner style’ vibe, something right up my alley.
After a tough week of personal attacks due to his ‘no high vis.’ dress code, Leeroy Petersen was keen to show me what his new venue should be known for – good food. He has completely gutted a ‘durty’ old Irish bar, giving it new life, natural light, wooden floors and smatterings of taxidermy on the walls.
Last week I took some time out of my busy weekend to check out the much-lauded ACME. And yes, while the Macaroni, Pig’s Head, Egg Yolk ($18) is undeniably delicious, you might be left wondering: where’s the rest of it?
While the predictable consequences of Lockout Laws are reaping havoc upon the character of Newtown, a level-by-level revamp is occurring in the original 1832 site of the ‘new town store’ from which the suburb drew its name.