Ormeggio At the Spit, Mosman
Why worry about Monday when you can have a Stressless Sunday? That's the premise at Ormeggio at the Spit, where you can have a six course dinner for $79. Amazing value for a two hatted restaurant. The beautiful view of Mosman Bay is not bad either.
The menu changes each week, depending on what seasonal produce is on offer. We started with some Sourdough and whipped ricotta with a sprinkling of chives. It's good quality sourdough, served warm and the whipped ricotta was a great alternative to butter.
We started with the Eggplant and tomato consomme, a very delicate and fresh dish. The eggplant was incredibly soft and the consomme, whilst there wasn't a lot of it, packed a punch of flavour.
Next was the Pan fried kingfish with puffed rice, broccolini powder and mussel water. The fish was cooked remarkably well and the puffed rice gave it a nice crunch. Although I didn't get much of a mussel flavour, it was still a very delicious dish to eat.
The Tagliolini was also cooked to perfection. Whilst the serving looked small, the mascarpone made it an incredibly creamy and decadent dish. I loved the hit of umami from the bottarga (fish roe) too.
The single meat dish of the night was the Lamb with coffee crumble. The lamb was braised, formed into thin sheets then fried, giving it a crispy crust on the outside. The coffee flavour was strong but not overpowering and worked in harmony with the sour cream emulsion and the black garlic puree.
Dessert was simply titled Textures of lemon and almond. It consisted a lemon and almond sponge, with almond ice cream lemon and almond puree, vanilla crumble and lemon granita. It was light and refreshing, but felt a little bit more like a palate cleanser/ pre-dessert than a full dessert.
All in all, Ormeggio is a great showcase of modern Italian cuisine. With friendly and professional service, water views, it's not a bad place to spend a Sunday evening.
Restaurant Hubert, Sydney CBD
Walking down the spiral stairs of Restaurant Hubert past thousands of miniature spirit bottles, you are transported into another world: the red drapes, candlelit tables, timber paneled walls and a baby grand piano catches my eye. It feels warm, romantic and full of character. It's hard to believe this used to be the site of a Chinese restaurant with a pagoda and a fishpond!
We started with the Ouefs en gelee, made with soft egg yolk, bonito jelly, trout roe and avruga. It's a rich, textural dish and had the umami flavours that are more commonly associated with Japanese dishes.
We couldn't go past the Duck liver parfait with maple syrup jelly. It was deliciously creamy and intense in flavour. The maple syrup jelly helped cut through the fattiness of the parfait. I simply couldn't stop eating it.
We were recommended by our waiter to order the Malakoff, it's everyone's favourite, we were told. It was hard to argue with that after taking a bit into the golden crust and being rewarded with a gooey ball of Gruyere cheese with a hint of mustard. Definitely one you don't want to share with too many people!
Just as impressive was the Steak tartare, a quintessential French dish. The wagyu topside had a great texture, mixed with the egg yolk, chives, capers and cornichons. It was topped by a generous mountain of fries.
For mains, the whole chicken or duck sounded tempting but a bit too big for our table of three, so we opted for the John Dory provencal. The basil and olive oil sauce was just simply outstanding and really the star of the dish, going perfectly with the poached John Dory fillets and the pippies.
The sides were just as impressive. The Pommes Anna is basically crispy layers of potato served with a buerre blanc sauce. It's hard not to love carbs when they're done like this!
We were intrigued by the Kimchi gratin and it did not disappoint. It packs a punch in terms of flavour and heat.
Onto desserts and we started with the Melon en surprise: a Santa Claus melon hollowed out melon balls with sorrel jelly, finger lime and young coconut sorbet. It's an incredibly refreshing dessert with a light sweetness and I loved the pop of the zesty finger limes.
Our second dessert was the Le Grand Macaron. The tartness of the raspberries was balanced by the sweetness of the rice cream and it was another joy to eat.
Hubert is a wonderful sensory experience and definitely lived up to the hype. I will definitely be back to try the Roast duck, of which they only have a limited quantity per day. Bookings are limited to group of 6+ but you can always take a seat at the bar whilst waiting for a table.
Sepia, Sydney CBD
One of the most memorable dining experiences ever was at Sepia several years ago. I had a chance to go back recently and was understandly super excited, but a tad nervous that sky high expectations might not be matched. I clearly needn't have worried.
The trio of amuse bouche of Saikou salmon, smoked scarlet prawn and Hiramasa kingfish looked absolutely divine. Encased in the perfectly spherical Saikou salmon were smoked salmon roe, bursting with flavour. The Kingfish wrapped in the wafer thin tatami iwashi (a blanket of dried little fish) was perfectly balanced with the jamon cream. The smoked prawn with carrot powder dumpling was incredibly delicate, but did not have the wow factor of the other two morsels.
The first course was the Spanner crab, sake vinegar jelly, brown butter emulsion, pea and horseradish. There was theatre at the table with the use of liquid nitrogen forming horseradish snow sprinkled over the dish. The crab meat was so sweet and tender (having been cooked in butter at 70 degrees). The fine sheet of sake vinegar jelly draped over the crab meat added some tangy notes, pairing wonderfully with the creamy brown butter emulsion which reminded me of the buttery base of a cheesecake. All the flavours worked really harmoniously together and did not overpower the spanner crab.
The next course of Sea scallop, macadamia nut cream, quail egg looked incredible as it arrived at our table. The scallops were sweet and plump, delicately matched with a smooth macadamia nut cream. The 'wreath' of scallop crackling with flowers added a nice textural touch to the dish.
The Charcoal grilled black lip abalone was very tender to eat, with almost a 'meaty' texture. The dashi cream and wakame oil gave it a great depth of flavour.
Continuing the seafood theme, the Bonito with roasted chicken cream, smoked soy and caviar was on point for flavour. The star of the dish for me was the luscious roasted chicken cream - made from the roasting of several chickens with butter, white wine and herbs.
The next dish of Seared uni with smoked bone marrow, cauliflower, yuzu kosho and toasted milk bread was small in size but ginormous in flavour. All the components worked well together and really enhanced the flavour of the uni.
Onto the mains: we started with the Roasted Aylesbury duck breast. It would be hard to find a more perfectly cooked piece of duck - perfectly pink and tender. The mulberry vinegar really gave the dish a slight acidic kick, balanced perfectly with the sheep yoghurt.
The David Blackmore wagyu with Jerusalem artichoke, miso and pine mushrooms was one of my favourite dishes of the night. Apart from looking spectacular, the wagyu was incredibly tender and buttery, combining so well with the sweet, creamy miso. The pine mushrooms on top were just absolutely bursting with flavour.
Even though I was starting to feel a bit full, I couldn't go past the optional cheese cost of Comte and pear jelly. The dish looked amazing - the pear was lying on a bed of shaved comte, interspersed with walnuts and celery. The pear was actually made of sorbet and inside was a mix of liquid cheese with pear jelly. It's probably the most inventive cheese course I've ever had. But be warned - it's best to share the cheese course as it is quite a lot of cheese!
Getting us in the mood for dessert was the Raspberry, salted white chocolate chantilly with wild strawberry syrup. I thought the texture would be similar to granita, but it was a bit more creamy and melted away as soon as it entered my mouth.
The first dessert of Milks involved eight different textures of milk - incredible! The smorgasboard of flavours and textures, ranging from coconut yoghurt to sheep milk sorbet and milk cake was amazing.
Now for Sepia's signature dessert - the Winter Chocolate Forest. The Chocolate Forest is an absolute joy to eat. Every spoonful, you discover a different flavour and texture combination. There's the aniseed flavours of the fennel fronds and the licorice juxtaposed against the smooth blackberry sorbet, the sweetness of the rose jellies and of course, the rich chocolate soil.
One more thing - Sepia has an incredible tea menu and if you want something other than wine, I would highly recommend it. The teas were served hot then poured over a jug full of ice. I can't recall exactly the varieties we tried but they were delicious and refreshing, well worth trying.
It's hard not to be wowed by Martin Benn's Sepia. The meal was nicely paced, service was impeccable and every dish was beautifully presented. The food is exceptional and each plate of food is a wonderful showcase of balancing flavours and textures. Sepia will continue to be one of my favourite restaurants in Sydney.
Quay has been on my wish list for a while and I finally got the chance to cross it off my list. We were lucky to get one of the tables on the mezzanine floor of the restaurant, with uninterrupted, sweeping views of the Sydney harbour and the Opera House. This really is dining with a view!
Dining with my parents and my boyfriend, we opted for the four course menu for $175pp. We figured that if we each get different dishes, it's like one big degustation!
The Amuse Bouche was Almonds and squash seeds with cultured cream and verjuice. Light and tangy, left me wanting for more.
For the first course, I got the Mud crab congee (est. 2003). Congee is not something you would find in a Western restaurant, let alone a fine dining one. So I was intrigued. Firstly, it smelled amazing. The congee itself was a bit more watery than the versions I am used to but tasted absolutely superb. The mix of the slightly salty egg yolk emulsion with the sweet crab meat really elevated the flavours.
The Raw smoked Blackmore wagyu had a subtle smokey flavour which went very well with the golden enoki mushrooms and the lightly spiced horseradish cream.
The Smoked eel and black beef pancetta were a wonderful pairing, and the fermented mushrooms really accentuated the dish.
For the second course, I chose the Wild black lip abalone, fermented chawanmushi, smoked pig jowl, roasted Komi and sesame. The chawanmushi was silky smooth and the abalone was very tender, but the star of the dish was definitely the pig jowl. It was simply divine, like eating the fattiest slice of tuna belly.
The Slow braised quail with brioche, grains, hazelnuts and coco button mushrooms delivered on both flavour and texture. The dish had a lovely crunch and each mouthful had so much going on. I was expecting the quail to be the star of the dish but actually, it was just a smorgasbord of ingredients all working together.
Compared to the other dishes, the XO Crayfish wasn't at the same lofty standards. The XO sauce lacked a bite and was more salty than anything else. The crayfish was very well cooked though.
Onto the third course and I had chosen the Blackmore wagyu with black rice miso, white maitake and black garlic. Cooked perfectly pink and tender, I don't recall eating a better piece of steak. The black garlic puree was out of this world delicious.
The Roasted masterstock duck had a great profile of flavours. I only wished it came with crispy skin.
...and onto desserts! Like many, I had watched the finale of Masterchef Season 2 and wanted to have the Snow Egg experience since. Today's version was nectarine flavoured. I went in with super its expectations and I got to say they were met. The presentation of the dish is stunning and almost too beautiful to eat. The egg sits on a bed of granita (today, it was nectarine flavoured). To eat it, you tap on the 'egg' to crack it open and out oozes the gooey centre. At first taste. I found the 'egg' a bit too sweet but when I took a little bit of everything in one spoonful (the ice cream filled meringue, the super refreshing granita, the malt biscuit) that's when the magic happens. So much is happening texturally and flavour-wise, I can see why it's now such an iconic dessert.
We also ordered Quay's other signature dessert, the Eight Textured Chocolate Cake. It's definitely one of the best chocolate desserts I've had. I can't say I made out all eight textures, but it tasted so damn good, it doesn't really matter. At the table, hot chocolate sauce is drizzled into the dark chocolate top coat, creating a hole in the cake. It's a great touch of theatre. The cake is rich and decadent, and we scrape the plate clean.
Dining at Quay was truly a memorable, three hat worthy experience - everything from the view to the service to the food. There were some truly outstanding dishes like the Blackmore Wagyu, the snow egg and the chocolate cake that will stay with me for a long time.
Ester is a restaurant that has been on my wish list for a little while now. I finally had the chance to visit with my family and it lived up to its expectations. With a wood-fired oven as the focal point of its kitchen, the flavours of the food really shines through. For ease of ordering, we opted for the $72 set menu.
Starting off with the Squid dumplings, the appearance of the dish was quite jarring (courtesy of the squid ink). I loved the chewiness of the dumpling skin and the cutlefish and pork filling was quite tasty.
Next was the Wood-fired roasted Rock oysters. The oysters still retained the texture normally associated with a raw oyster but with the additional smokey flavour. Despite not usually being a fan of horseradish, the horseradish emulsion went quite nicely with the oysters and definitely whetted our appetite for the food to come.
The Blood sausage sanga is definitely a step up from the average sausage sanga! The blood sausage had incredibly tasty, served on a fluffy steamed piece of white bread with aioli and caramelised onions. I could have downed a few more of these!
The Kingfish sashimi was beautifully fresh and combined beautifully with the charcoal nori sauce, the smooth bonito emulsion and the orange zest powder. All the flavours just worked when mixed with one another.
The King prawns were chargrilled to perfection and tasted divine with the capers and generous lashings of brown butter. Definitely a dish to savour!
The Peas/ lardo/ corn dish was not very inspriing on paper but it most definitely delivered. The lardo mixed with the fresh peas and corn made this a mouthwatering dish (though most definitely not the healthiest!).
The wood-fired Cauliflower is Ester's signature dish so I was definitely eager to see what all th fuss is about. The cauliflower is ginormous and the time in the wood-fired oven gives it a lovely smokey and sweet flavour. Together with the creamy almond emulsion, toasted almonds and mint, it made cauliflower one amazing tasting vegetable!
The Flank steak was marinated in fermented rice and was wonderfully tender and juicy. I loved the accompaniments to the dish too - the sweet, falling-apart leek and the smoked onion puree.
Onto desserts and the Salted caramel semi-freddo had the balance of sweet and salty just right. I'm a sucker for anything with black sesame so the sprinkling of black sesame powder took this to another level.
Our last course of our very filling menu was Three milks, which consists of a cows milk panna cotta, a sheep's milk foam, a goat's milk dulce de leche, olive oil biscuit crumbs and rosemary. It's best when all the components are mixed together as you get the lightness of the yoghurt, the sweetness of the dulce de leche and the creaminess of the panna cotta. Overall, it was a bit too sweet for me but I really admired their creativity.
I had a great time at Ester and will be back for sure to try the rest of their menu (the bone marrow is calling me!). The use of the wood fired oven injects amazing flavour to the dishes and I love the rustic nature of the food. It's definitely a place meant for sharing so bring your friends or family along!
Gastro Park, Potts Point
For an early birthday celebration, I was treated to a 10 course tasting menu at Gastro Park at Potts Point. Helmed by Grant King, the menu showcased molecular gastronomy at its finest and each dish was intriguing and had a sense of fun.
Starting with the snacks, it took a few seconds to compute what has landed on our table. Perched on the black stones were a couple of slices of citrus cured salmon and an edible garden tartlet with pumpkin puree. The salmon was delicious with a hit fo zinginess and the tart was full of flavour with an extra crispy black wafer shell.
The last component of the snacks were the Wagyu beef grissini, which were a joy to eat. The beetroot powder and pecorino cheese made a great combination with the thin slices of smoked wagyu.
The scallop ceviche with pomegranate juice was one of my favourite dishes of the night. Firstly, the theatre the dry ice created was magnificent. Opening the shell revealed these delicate slices of scallop ceviche in a vibrant red pomegranate juice. The scallops were melt in your mouth tender and I could have easily drank a few shell-fuls of the pomegranate concoction.
The seared artic scampi was perfectly cooked with the coconut and apple adding a freshness to the dish.
Ever since seeing this dish on Masterchef, I had wanted to try the Liquid butternut gnocchi for myself and it definitely lived up to expectations. The pearls of pumpkin soup is held together by the thinnest of membranes, each uniform in size. Taking each gnocchi as a whole, the pumpkin soup just bursts in your mouth and is an absolute delight to eat. The consomme was equally divine - it's so intense in flavour I felt like I was eating a bowlful of mushrooms! The consomme was a little more cloudy than what I was anticipating, but the flavours were faultless.
The Jewfish had an extra crispy skin and was teamed with a rich roast bone sauce, fried enoki and a parsnip powder and foam which was again, so incredibly intense in flavour.
The pork belly was cooked perfectly, with a rich mixture of spanner crab and pork ‘pebbles’ which were basically like pork crackling broken down into a hundred pieces - heaven!
Cooked for two days in a sous vide water bath and finished on a robata grill, the Riverina short rib was nothing short of amazing. I didn't get a photo of the beef which cut as I was too busy devouring it, but it was still perfectly pink in the middle after 48 hours of cooking! The short rib had just the right amount of fat too and every accompanying element on the plate (the smoked eggplant puree, peas and pods) helped to enhance the star of the dish. My bf and I were so gobsmacked by the quality of this beef we started googling to see where we could buy a sous vide machine to recreate it at home!
On to desserts! The sheep milk's yoghurt, srawberry and pomelo icy pop was a playful palate cleanser.
My bf was trialling a non-dairy diet, and he got a Celery sorbet. I had my doubts but it was incredibly refreshing and I actually really, really liked it.
The Robata pineapple was another highlight of the night. It was beautifully caramelised without being overly sweet. The sorbet by itself was a tad overpowering but when eaten together with the shell and buttermilk, was just perfect. It's a very clean and refreshing dessert where all the flavours just work together. My bf got the coconut sorbet in place of the yuzu version, which was equally delicious.
The final dessert and course of the night is the Chocolate, honeycomb and vanilla sphere. Cracking the chocolate shell open, out oozes the vanilla and honeycomb lava. It's like a Cadbury creme egg but flavoured with cardamom, saffron and ginger - an extravagant end to an extravagant meal.
Gastro Park definitely deserves its hatted status. The food did take a little while to come out, but completely understandable given they often had to make a non-diary variation of each dish. Service was top notch and they were incredibly accommodating with the dietary requirements, offering alternative dishes that were just as high in quality as their standard menu. The food is inventive and creative, making for a memorable dining experience.
Ms Gs, Potts Point
Ms G's is one of my favourite restaurants in Sydney and my last outing there was no different. It ticks all the right boxes in terms of atmosphere, service and food (both in quality and inventiveness).
In recent years, franken food have begun making its way onto menus (e.g. ramen burger, cruffic and cronut to name a few). Here at Ms G's, they offer Cheeseburger springrolls - it sounded too intriguing to resist. Biting into one of these, we felt like we had entered food heaven! So what does it tastes like? Exactly like how you would imagine it would taste - it's like having a bite sized cheeseburger wrapped in deep fried pastry!
The grilled corn on a cob is a staple on the Ms G's menu and paired with the lime and generous shavings of parmesan, is absolutely delicious.
The Vietnamese style steak tartare comes with prawn crackers rather than croutons. The steak tartare was tender with the sweet, salty and tangy notes that Vietnamese cuisines are known for. I also loved the addition of the fried eschallots sprinkled on top.
The photo doesn't do our next dish, the Nasi Goreng hitam justice. It's a twist on the Malaysian classic with the rice fried with chorizo and squid ink. The dish was bold in flavour, with a good degree of heat, and topped off with a sunny side up egg.
For dessert, we went for The BOSS - primarily because it contained kaya French toast, which I discovered whilst holidaying in Malaysia recently. The mixture of coconut, pandan, egg and sugar in the kaya spread is just intoxicatingly good. But that wasn't all that I loved about the dessert - the thai milk ice cream was velvelty smooth and intense in flavour, and the blueberry jam added a touch of freshness. Together with the puffed rice and honeycomb, it was definitely a fun dessert to eat though it did get a little too sweet by the end.
Once again, Ms G's has delivered. It's fun place to go for a date or with a group of friends. The only downsides are the lack of parking and poor lighting for food photos!
Cafe Paci, Darlinghurst
You know it's a good meal when you are still thinking about it weeks later, and that's the case with Cafe Paci. What started as a pop up has now been opened for two years, as Sydney has fallen in love with the creative dishes of Pasi Patanen. It was definitely one of the most inventive and creative meals I've ever had.
The meal started with a plate of snacks. The wafer thin oat crackers topped with oyster cream and black garlic were very tasty. The rye biscuit with lardo, kohl rabi and apple had a nice sweetness, topped with a sprinkling of bacon powder. But my favourite snack was the pastry tart with ocean trout fish floss and dill sour cream. The tart was the just the right amount of crumbliness and the fish floss really packed a punch of flavour.
Coming on a separate plate was the Rye Taco topped with rice pudding, egg butter and sour onions which was wonderfully buttery and creamy.
The bread then arrived and it was no ordinary bread - it was a Finnish Rye Bread made with Potato Flour and brushed with molasses, served with house churned butter. Served warm, it was quite dense and moist, and the molasses gives it a raisin-like sweetness. I knew I should have been saving stomach space for the rest of the courses, but I couldn't stop eating it.
The seasonal degustation menu details only a list of ingredients, leaving it to our imagination to figure out what we would be having. The Blue swimmer crab, pickled carrots with tarragon cream dish had just the right sweet and savory notes. The pickled ribbons of carrot were beautifully presented on the bed of crab meat and it must have taken incredible knife work to slice them so thinly. Meshed with the tarragon cream, it tasted like it came straight from the sea.
When the next dish hit the table, the collective reaction was "Wow". Combining some of my favourite foods on the world, the Duck, Hazelnut, Radicchio, Raspberry creation was visually stunning and definitely one of the highlights of the night. The Confit Duck, covered in Hazelnut Milk, Roasted Hazelnuts and Radicchio dusted with Freeze Dried Raspberry was a genius combination. The duck was juicy and tender, with the hazelnut adding both creaminess and crunch. The acidity in the raspberry and the slight bitterness of the radicchio really helped to cut through the richness and it was a real flavour explosion in the mouth. Interestingly, at times, it almost felt like I was eating a dessert!
The lofty standards were maintained with the next course: Cabbage, Mussel Butter, Bone Marrow and Pomelo. Cabbage can be pretty plain and boring, but when it is roasted in mussel butter, it is a whole different story. The cabbage was soft and tender, with a real sweetness. The mussels were incredibly plump and juicy, and mixed with the pomelo sauce, the bone marrow and the poached pork lardo was just so utterly delicious.
The menu said Photato. Was it a Pho with potatos? We were close...It was a modern take on the Vietnamese classic. There were the beautifully cooked slices of rare Wagyu beef, the chewy enoki mushrooms, garlic chips and of course, the super thin potato noodles which were served al dente. The broth was very flavoursome though I do think I prefer a traditional, hearty bowl of pho over this intepretation.
We took up the offer to share the optional cheese course between us, which involved Gorgonzola with prunes rolled in seasame seeds and crackers of dehydrated chocolate mousse. The dehydrated chocolate mousse was really light and airy, and paired perfectly with the gorgonzola which was really gooey and creamy.
And now we move onto dessert! The Carrot, Yoghurt, Liquorice combination was intriguing and not being a fan of liquorice, I was a little apprehensive about it. However, all my doubts were erased once I dug into the dish. The outer layer was a super light yoghurt foam, followed by a layer of carrot sorbet and finally, the liquorice cake as the base which had a mild aniseed flavour. It was a wonderfully balanced dish and really lit up our tastebuds, and we were craving for more.
The main dessert was Pear and Parsley with Poached Pear, Custard, Parsley Sorbet and Candied Parsley. I had never had parsley in a dessert before and the herbaceous tones really went well with the perfectly poached pear and custard. The quenelle of parsley sorbet was just ridiculously smooth.
The meal ended with the Petit Fours. The Pork and Fennel, being pork crackling coated in chocolate and fennel seeds was a daring combination. The pork crackling almost melts in the mouth and again had the sweet and savoury notes. The Corn and Butter was indeed fairy floss sprinkled with bits of pop corn. For me, it was a bit too much sugar and the only dish where we didn't wipe the plates clean.
All in all, it was one of the best meals I have ever had. Service was great from the moment we walked in the door. Whilst the palette of the restaurant is predominantly grey, it is definitely not how I would describe his food - which is filled with bold dashes of colour! The menu is original and inventive, and really opened up my mind to a lot of flavour combinations that I had not considered before. Hopefully, it stays open for a little while longer!
Kepos Street Kitchen, Redfern
Kepos Street Kitchen had been on my list of cafes to try for a while. After a 15 minute wait, we were seated inside - the sun filled room felt warm and inviting. The menu had Middle Eastern influences and it was hard to make up our minds on what to try.
We started with some iced teas/ mocktails, which looked amazing served in mason jars. I had the Pear and Elderflower spritzer and it was refreshing without being overly sweet. There was also a generous serving of fruit to go with our drinks. It's nice to see a cafe with not just your standard juice/ smoothie drinks selection.
The Tunisian style seared Yellow Fin Tuna salad was a spectacular dish packed with flavour. I loved the combination of the perfectly seared tuna with the eggplant, soft boiled egg, potatoes and the harissa dressing.
I have never been a fan of vegemite, but I was intrigued to try the vegemite tahini dressing that went with the Moroccan lamb and pinenut cigars with a soft boiled egg. The hint of vegemite was slight so did not overpower the dish. The cigars were crisp and tasty, and who doesn't love a good soft boiled egg.
My friend ordered the Southern Fried Chicken sandwich, which is basically a burger and it's huge! The coleslaw and Chermoula mayo goes really well with the crunchy, tender chicken in a delicious brioche bun.
For dessert, we were informed by the waitress that there is no point of putting the desserts n the menu as it's ever changing and best to be seen at the front counter. A clever strategy as after you have inspected the array of sweets on offer, it's simply irresistible. We opted for the Pistachio and date tart and it was both crunchy and chewy, and not too sweet.
In my mind, Kepos Street Kitchen definitely deserves its hat and it's no wonder there is often a queue out the front. Service is fast and friendly and the food is great quality. It's the perfect place for a catch up with family or friends, and it's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Sokyo at The Star, Pyrmont
Tucked away inside The Star is the acclaimed Japanese restaurant, Sokyo, helmed by Chase Kojima. Unlike many fine dining restaurants, it does not offer a degustation...which isn't necessarily a bad thing, as we get to pick exactly what we would like to try tonight.
Our first course was the Scallop ceviche, topped with crispy potato, micro herbs and a tomato medley. The dish was super light and fresh, a perfect way to start the evening. The thinly sliced scallops went really well with the yuzu dressing, and the crispy potato adds some good texture and flavour to the dish.
Salmon belly is one of my favourite cuts of sashimi and I was not dissappointed. Not only did it look amazing on the plate, it was gloriously fatty and tastes ridiculously good. We could definitely have done with another plate of that!
The Short rib beef skewers grilled on a robata grill just utterly delicious and completely melts in the mouth. I love the eschallots wedged in between the wagyu which gave a dose of crunch and sweetness.
The Kurobuta Pork Belly skewers were just as mouth watering. The combination of the rich and tender pork belly and the juicy daikon is simply divine.
We rounded out the savoury dishes of the night with the Spicy tuna sushi roll. It was very tasty and the quality of the fish is undeniably good, but it didn't have the wow factor of the other dishes.
Onto dessert and Goma street is perfection on a plate. The waitress advised we should smash down the tower, so we can mix in all the textures and flavours together. It was almost too pretty to touch but we did smash it down and I loved all the elements. There were discs of dark chocolate layered with a sesame filling, topped with black sesame crumble. It paired really well with the velvelty smooth black sesame ice cream and caramelised white chocolate crumb. Definitely one of the best desserts I have had.
Our second dessert was the Tofu cheesecake with Thyme sugar and strawberry consomme. It reminded me of the tofu pudding (tofu-fa) you find at yumcha restaurants. The cheesecake was light and fluffy, though I did wish there was a little more strawberry consomme.
Sokyo is now one of my fave restaurants in Sydney, a sophisticated dining space, perfect to celebrate a special occasion. Whilst it is somewhat pricey, we left with very full stomachs, spending less than what you would normally for a degustation at a fine dining restaurant. I would love to go back and maybe nab a seat at the sushi bar to see the chefs in their element.
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