05 March 2020

Firegrill, CBD Sydney (28 Feb 2020)

151 Clarence Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Firing up a new grill in the CBD

Visited this new spacious restaurant during their soft opening week so dining was contained to upstairs while downstairs was still being finalised. Events manager Kim Daniela Antunovic, who I'm suspecting might have been in the 2001 movie Fluffer, patrolled the floor for diner feedback. Decor was nice matched with professional friendly service. I did find the table felt ergonomically a bit too high for the seat level, which gave me that tea party sense as you need to raise your hands upward to rest them on the table.

Oysters natural - 3 freshly opened oysters with Fire Ice, Red Wine Mignonette and Lime Pearls ($15) were from Nambucca. Actually preshucked this time around before service but hopefully in the future can be shucked to order to retain more of the flavoursome brine flavour. Not sure what the 'fire ice' or 'lime pearls' refers to? I couldn't spot on the plate but it's early days so perhaps will appear on the dish when fully opened?

Flank, Riverina, Grain Fed Australian NSW ($22, 300g) add on Alaskan King Crab Legs ($22), choice of sauce chimichurri. Cooked medium rare as ordered, nice flavour, tasty alaskan king crab meat but you're paying a premium price for the amount of the next level surf n turf add on. The puree and roasted onions underneath were good inclusions. A better steak knife would be nice though. Vanilla Panna Cotta, pomegranate and lavender honey ($16) had a great wobble factor and I enjoyed the flavours. The pomegranate helps equalise the sweetness in the dessert. My preference would be for a few more raspberries over the pretty flowers.

Firegrill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

25 February 2020

Flour and Stone Annexe, Woolloomooloo (25 Feb 2020)

43 Riley Street, Woolloomooloo NSW 2011

A new slice of the bakery

Lucky timing for me driving past the new Flour and Stone Annexe geared for the takeaway trade of their freshly baked temptations. The solo Peach Tart ($8.50) caught my eye on display for a yummy morning tea treat. The brand new space looks good filled with all the usual suspects we've grown to love. I'll definitely have to keep that wonderful Lemon Dream cake in mind for a special occasion.

Flour and Stone Annexe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

20 February 2020

Bitton Gourmet: French Cafe & Bistro, Rose Bay (17 Feb 2020)

23 Plumer Road, Rose Bay NSW 2029

Bitton joins Rose Bay

It's looking like a good start for Bitton Gourmet's new opening in Rose Bay taking over the prestige corner site where Bernasconi's ran for many years. As you enter you're greeted with their extensive range of gourmet jams, dressings and condiments. Cappuccino ($4.40) using Grinders Coffee was nice although positions itself as one of the more expensive coffees in the area. French Crepes with Bitton Strawberry and Vanilla Jam, Mixed Berry Compote ($16) had nice thin crepes and tasty jam. Would have loved more of the berry compote for the serving size. A small pot of double cream would do wonders as well. Outside tables are on the petit side so a bit of plate tetris will be required if you're thinking of sharing a dish with side plates. Service was welcoming and friendly as you'd expect from a hospitality veteran with two other well-established cafes in Alexandria and Oatley. Pleasant outside dining on a sunny day with local views of the green trees and golf course. For those with deeper pockets I spy glasses of NV Louis Roederer Brut Champagne available for $26 to wash down your breakfast order.

Artistry Garden Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

19 February 2020

Artistry Garden: French & Japanese, CBD Sydney (18 Feb 2020)

Raphael Place, One Farrer Place, Sydney NSW 2000

Michelin Star dining in CBD

Taking up residence in a nice leafy courtyard, Artistry Garden is well positioned to attract the corporate crowd from the Governor Philip & Macquarie Tower above. Caffeine fixes are led by head barista @adengillelandbarista (ex-Four Ate Five, Surry Hills and ex-Soma, Ultimo) equipped with Modbar espresso machines. He's a passionate soul when it comes to coffee and interesting to note their dine in ceramic cups match the volume of their takeaway cups for consistency. Cappuccino ($3.80) using Single O 'Killerbee' blend is made well to my liking with the right ratio of milk served in the smallish cup to allow for a decent flavour hit. Pastries are from Sonoma Bakery so look out for the guilty pleasure Morning Bun temptation.

In the kitchen Michelin Star Executive Chef Masahiko Yomoda aka @indomitable_chef brings his love of French and Japanese cuisine to the menu. Sydney rock oyster from Merimbula with shiso ponzu, nigori sake jelly ($29, half doz) are presented well and I'm told shucked to order. The nigori sake jelly is something quite different but my preference is still the natural with a slice of lemon and the well balanced shiso ponzu mignonette. An affordable quick lunch menu toastie of top-side roast beef, dijon mustard, manchego, onion, pickled red cabbage ($16.50) is a tasty combo. Buttered for that extra flavour and crunch with each bite. The side of pickled vegetables helps contrast to the richness of the toastie. Josper grilled marinated pineapple, coconut ice cream, Valrhona chocolate ($18) is set to win a few dessert hearts. Sophisticated flavours and textures working well. If the pineapple was sliced before serving would help negate the need for a knife to eat the dish.

For an after work wind down treat I'd recommend the Negroni, Barrel Aged with House Blend of Gin and Vermouths, Campari, Aged in a Cinnamon Smoked Cask ($22) by bartender @timdae. Thnx @kesgram for the drink. So far one of my favourite well balanced negronis of the year, and the single ice cube is always a good start. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner it's still early days for the venue and hopefully the weather will remain kind to take advantage of the al fresco vibes but there's always the cosy air con restaurant inside to retreat to for dining supported by the friendly and professional service.

Artistry Garden Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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