Pretty as a picture dishes
Continuing my week of birthday celebrations starting with Berowra Waters Inn and Cafe Sydney I was taken out to The Restaurant at the Art Gallery of NSW by friends who sadly couldn't make it to my birthday the day before. I'm an avid fan of the Art Gallery so it was a great opportunity to try the restaurant with its light and airy views of the surrounding area. My favourite dish of the day was the Ocean trout tartare ($23) which had simple yet refreshing flavours and the tomato consommé had good depth of flavour which I enjoyed to the end by soaking up with the complimentary table bread. For a health conscious snack you might like the Sweet potato chips and salsa verde ($9.50). I really liked the way zucchini in the White polenta lasagne ($27.50) was used to help cut through the heaviness of the lasagna although some extra green vegetables within the lasagna would have been appreciated to provide more balance. My Snapper, crisp quinoa, heirloom tomato salad ($36) had a lovely combination of flavours including some refreshing mint although I wasn't a huge fan of the unsettling and somewhat annoying crunchy bits of quinoa and would have enjoyed it even more if they were left out. I had a bit of dish envy for the Veal tenderloin, pearl barley risotto, white asparagus ($35) which was very good and the Barramundi, gnocchi, shellfish foam ($34) was well liked.
They make a decent Hot chocolate full of flavour and the tiny Espresso wasn't too bitter but could have been a bit larger. We had a nice Selection of cheese ($21) but would have preferred it to be served with bread rather than the slightly sweet wafer crackers and somewhat unpalatable oatmeal biscuits which I've never enjoyed. A nicely presented Raspberry iced pavolva, mango, crème fraiche ($17) was an interesting take on the dessert which made for a refreshing finish. The complimentary chocolate Petit four were devilishly smooth and yummy. Service seemed friendly enough and efficient and if you have the time I'd definitely recommend checking out the art exhibitions as part of your day.
Other visits to The Restaurant:
• 14 Nov 2011 - Picasso Media Lunch, Heirloom Tomato Salad, Pan Fried Spanish Mackerel, Patatas Bravas, Warm Almond Cake
• 9 Jan 2011 - Ocean Trout Tartare, White Polenta Lasagne, Barramundi, Veal Tenderloin, Snapper, Sweet Potato Crisps Raspberry Iced Pavlova
PROS: Nice outlook including water views, Light and open space, Nicely presented dishes, Efficient service, Quality ingredients, Free art exhibitions
CONS: Pricey dishes, Limited street parking outside
MUST TRY: Ocean trout tartare
Complimentary bread and olive oil
Tempting aperitifs on display
Entrance to the Art Gallery of New South Wales
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