A Little Piece of Mine

Oh! You Pretty (Sydney) Things…

One of the world’s great dining destinations? Yeh, I think Sydney can comfortably cosy up to other cities on that list. All that domineering sun and sea, albeit tempered by high rents and labour costs. Even so the food scene is booming, with spots like Surry Hills and Darlinghurst pulling in food focused punters, while neophytes like Chippendale and Redfern, Alexandria and Marrickville are snapping hungrily at their heels. When I left Sydney 18 years ago – these were not the precints for a fine food fix. As a ringlet coiffed hipster in a home deco shop quipped “People come to Redfern on weekends now for breakfast! That’s how much it’s changed.” There’s just so much good stuff out there, everywhere. Potts Point’s Macleay Street is still a magnet, with Monopole serving up all things delicious on plate and in glass.  Old waterside favourites, The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay with its working harbour vista and Catalina on Rose Bay with its beats working spirit, keep on keeping on. Federico Zanellato has introduced highstyle Italian pizzazz to the quiter reaches of Pyrmont, on Sydney Wharf. There’s water about but the vibe is more urban than coastal, although the Aperol apero at LuMi could almost transport you to Capri. Melbourne boy Teague Ezard has unfurled his knife roll over at the sprawling Star Casino, serving up expertly seared meats and sides of candied parsnips to a bunch of folks that gamble on everything but their food. The space is apparently named for a giant lump of BLACK wood that reclines in front of house. Another southern export, Frank Camorra, has grafted his tapas emporia MoVida into Surry Hills. Bocadillos, padrón pimientos and escabeche is Spain in a mouthful. Down the road there’s the breezy, open-plan Nomad, with its Mediterranean-Middle Eastern bent: hummous rubs ceramic rims with foie gras & chicken parfait, chermoula & spatchcock with calamari in olive crumbs, and nearby is the perennial Asian perfection of Longrain. Skip over to Alexandria, which has morphed from Australia’s largest industrial area into a fun place to be without overalls, to The Grounds and the delightful Potting Shed festooned with petal heavy pots, lush hanging greenery, a parrot, garden tools, including mini trowels doubling as menu clips. The food is fresh, unfussy and quite excellent. Food fads come and go – chilli ice cream, pulled pork everything, foams, chia, slow cooked lamb necks, plates to share, natural wines, drinks in jars, kale smoothies, the cronut – but good looking cooking keeps us coming back.

Boathouse salmon

Sashimi of salmon, buttermilk, ponzu, fingerlime &  radish
The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay

Lumi everygreen

‘Evergreen’: sorrel sorbet, lemon & basil granita, mint meringue & minty shisho jelly,
plus parsley salt 
@ LuMi Bar & Dining

Boathouse beetroot

Roast baby beets, goats curd, olive, pinenuts & sorrell
@ The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay


Ceviche of scallops, with charred avocado, sweet corn & puffed wheat @ Monopole


Spelt raviol with pumpkin, chives, burnt butter & pearls of avruga caviar
LuMi Bar & Dining

Boquerone at Movida

A single perfect anchovy with smoked tomato sorbet on a ‘cracker’ @ Movida Sydney

Betel at Longrain

Betel leaves cradling smoked trout, peanut relish & green mango @ Longrain

Screen Shot 2015-04-16 at 11.33.45

Chargrilled carrots with almond dukkah and labne @ Nomad

Chippies at the potting shed

Crisp chippies sprouting from a terracotta pot @ The Potting Shed @ The Grounds, Alexandria

Ezard duch

Tamarind and honey glazed – oh so pink – duck breast, with five spice, rhubarb, spinach and pumpkin @ BLACK by Ezard


Pavlova with strawberries & strawberry sorbet @ Catalina

Potting Shed Tiramisu

Trowel-sized serving of ‘tiramisu’ @ The Potting Shed @ The Grounds, Alexandria

Boathouse LMP

A Lillipution lemon meringue tart @ The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay





Leave a Reply