21 June 2011

The Departure Lounge: Mexico at Piano Room, Potts Point (9 June 2011)

1 Bayswater Road, Potts Point NSW 2011

Overseas without the jet lag

Thanks to Ms Darlinghurst from Eat Drink Play for inviting me along as a guest to the first week of The Departure Lounge ($15 pre-booked, $20 at the door). Mexico was in store for my group of four once we had our Boarding Passes — I like the attention to detail of the ticket design. Arriving early helps find a nice spot to set up possie. Two cocktails and a chef’s plate was included with the entry. The Hakka-san cocktail was apparently the Piano Room’s version of a margarita. Quite easy to drink and made from scratch so it’s not watered down, but still went quickly. Getting two cocktails is probably worth the $15 alone but you also get a small tasting plate. Other Mexican themed tasting plate dishes were available for $10 each prepared by Chef Sarah French. Each dish had its distinctive taste but some were a lot easier to eat and share than others. I preferred the Smoked chicken and caramelised onion quesadilla ($10) and the wonderfully crispy Bunuelos ($10). It’s probably preferable if the dishes can be eaten by hand rather than needing cutlery since most of the seating is quite laid back and lounge-like.

The Mexican band were a lively bunch that moved around the room although at first needed to compete with the Piano Room’s sound system playing different music which made it very noisy at times. The dancing lady fluttered her arms around like a butterfly in her colourful dress — although I could really work out if she had any other moves. The Departure Lounge hostesses were welcoming and attentive so you didn’t have to get out of your seat to get your cocktails at the bar. Probably a good thing since the bar staff weren’t particularly friendly as they concentrated on making the cocktails and didn’t seem very customer-focused. I reckon it’s best to remain seated and relax with your friends while the hostesses grab your orders. The Piano Room decor is quite lavish with nice mood lighting although I was half-expecting there to be some Mexican decorations around as well. Perhaps some large flags, blow-up cacti and sombreros would have helped create a more party-themed atmosphere, but then again the price of entry would probably be more too.

The Departure Lounge on Thursday
Week 1. Mexico 9th June

Week 2. Japan 16th June

Week 3. Greece 23rd June

Week 4. Zimbabwe 30th June

Week 5. Morocco 7th July

Week 6. France 14th July

Week 7. Old England 21st July

Week 8. Spain 28th July

Week 9. Vietnam 4th August

Week 10. Brazil 11th August

Other visits to The Piano Room:
9 June 2011 - The Departure Lounge - Mexico
12 August 2010 - Cheese Plate, Chicken Satay, Arancini, Anitpasto

PROS: Entry includes two cocktails which is pretty good value, Nice d├ęcor, Live entertainment, Friendly hostesses, Extra tasting plates to choose from
CONS: Bar staff weren’t particularly friendly, Thursday could be considered a school night, There didn’t seem to be a drinks menu and cocktail menu doesn’t display prices, Extra drinks could be expensive, Hard to know what the tasting dishes might look and taste like
MUST TRY: Visiting on one of the other themed night

Sonya Mefaddi from Fashion Palette and Ms Darlinghurst from Eat Drink Play

Flight crew hosts

My boarding pass for Mexico, includes 2 cocktails and Chef's Plate ($15 pre-booked, $20 at door)

Hakka-san cocktail

Chef's plate, avocado salsa with corn chips

Tequila chicken with mole ($10)

Pescado a la veracruzana ($10)

Spiced bean nachoes with guacamole, salsa and cheese ($10)

Smoked chicken and caramelised onion quesadilla ($10)

Bunuelos traditional fritter ($10)

List of kitchen dishes to be prepared

Bartender making Hakka-san cocktail, apparently the Piano Rooms version of a Marguerita

A quiet drink between friends

Seating with a view down William Street

Bar area

Big pussycat

The Departure Lounge hostesses waiting for their cocktail drink orders

Cocktail menu — nice writing

Mexican live entertainment

Balcony smoking area with a view

Nice decor in the toilet

Below the famous Coke sign

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Piano Room on Urbanspoon


Maria said...

I am ever so amazed by your energy to attend all these events! ;-D

Miss Vodka said...

Nice pics. Looks like fun :)

Can I ask which camera you use?


Adrian (Food Rehab) said...

Too bad about the service but lovin the concept

sugarpuffi said...

I saw this and was torn by which 'country' i should go to haha!
and omg how fun! they actually give u a boarding pass too!

might go to the morocco and france one :D

Gianna@TheEmptyFridge said...

Such a fun idea! I popped around on Thursday for the Greece night but I think I just got there too early! Brazil sounds definitely interesting, the bonus has to be that there are no ash clouds anywhere to disrupt the flights!

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