Archive for January, 2010

January 26, 2010

Mojos Cafe & Tapas Bar

by minibites

Caipirinha, Paradiso, Spanish Fly

This little Spanish restaurant has it going on. Relaxed atmosphere, great simple tapas, delicious cocktails and a beautiful view of Sydney’s treasure, Bondi Beach. The restaurant itself looks as though it doesn’t accommodate for many, but as you gravitate towards the back of the restaurant, you’re revealed to large tables to cater for groups and countertops for couples. The interior design reeks of old school Spanish style; rustic furniture, crosses and skulls.

To kick off the night, the 3 amigos begin with a cocktail each – Caipirinha, a refreshing yet sour mix of muddled fruit, The Paradiso, a blended mix of vodka, chambord, lime and passionfruit and my favourite, the Spanish Fly, a shaken mix of chartuese and licor 43 with passionfruit, lemon and cranberry.

Mixed Happy Hour tapas

Salt & Pepper Squid

With our perfect timing and by luck, we arrived before Happy Hour (4pm-6pm) so all the Happy Hour tapas were $7 including $7 cocktails. With excitement and a grin from ear to ear, we ordered a mix of tapas – Chilli Prawns, Grilled Chorizos, Cous Cous Balls, Garlic Mushrooms, Creamy Baked Potatoes and Salt & Pepper Squid. Generous, fresh and simple.

White Chocolate Cheesecake

Mango & Coconut Torte

Dessert was next, and sadly this was the biggest let down for the restaurant. The white chocolate cheesecake was pleasant but definitely very rich and too overwhelming to consume the entire slice. The torte was dry, tasteless and unfortunately the only non-chocolate dessert on the menu.

The Happy Hour tapas and perfect view of the beach definitely makes this restaurant worthwhile. Reservations are highly recommended, especially for the tables next to the window or outdoors to absorb the beautiful view.

Mojos
32 Campbell Parade
Bondi Beach, Sydney

Mojo's Cafe & Tapas Bar on Urbanspoon

January 16, 2010

Sticky Bar

by minibites

I’m beginning to wonder how many of these little gems I have been missing all this time. Sticky Bar is found through a unmarked door, a series of tunnels, dark staircases and above the Tablefor20 restaurant. Welcome the land of word-of-mouth bars, beautiful vintage furniture, high ceilings, rustic features and good cocktails and nibbles – staff know their stuff, exclusivity and drinks are at least $15 a pop.

Cured meat platter and Salt & Pepper squid

Tropical Whirl, Passion for the Sad, Aphrodite, Englishman in Italy

There is no print menu, with only a few chalked on the wall behind the bar – so you’ll have to release full trust with the bartender to make you a poison. My bartender asked for my criteria, which were fruity, berry and sweet and he whipped up the Aphrodite – sweet, berryful and not too strong. For nibbles, we order the cured meat platter with a array of salami, bocconcini, olives, bread and crackers and a plate of salt and pepper squid to share. The meat platter was delicious with favoured bocconcini to match. The salt and pepper squid was perfect – tender, well seasoned and accompanied with peppered avocado and sauce. I never fancy avocado and I had mouthfuls of this.

Winning the runner up award in Time Out Sydney Bar Awards 2009 for the Best Small Bar category, I could see why. Attentive service and great food and drink to match. The bar does become crowded on a Friday night as people begin to clock off, so it’s great to be there as early as possible to find a cosy spot on a vintage sofa. Usually the door’s open, but if not, you send a text to get inside.

Sticky Bar
Level 2, 182 Campbell St
Surry Hills, Sydney
www.tablefor20.blogspot.com
Open Wed-Sat from 6:30pm

Sticky Bar on Urbanspoon

January 13, 2010

Spice I Am

by minibites

Golden Siam, Ten Cane Colada & Tiger Paw

Enter the front door and you’re welcomed by staff, dark cedar floors, modern dining arrangements and an extensive food and cocktail menu. The names on the menu may scare some, but the descriptions are true to their word and flavours. I’ve heard mixed reviews about this restaurant, but I wasn’t ready to rule them out – and it was the perfect opportunity for a pre-new year dinner with friends devouring a good feed and one too many cocktails.

Over the course of the night, the 3 amigos devour over 7 tasty cocktails. My favourite being the Ten Cane Colada, Pink Lily and Tiger Paw. Definitely sample the Tiger Paw if you usually opt for a pint of beer over a cocktail – there is a hidden plesant surprise. Overall, majority of the cocktails on the menu are fruity yet refreshing, and definitely not too strong.

Roast Duck Salad

Massaman Curry Nua

Moo Gob Pik Pao

Proceeding onto the meals, our entree to share was a Roast Duck Salad filled with tender pieces of duck breast, your usual salad suspects with a topping of a light sweet yet tangy lime sauce – and looking for the dish on their website, it appears to have disappeared off the menu so it’s a good possibility that this was a special.

Our mains to share was the Massaman Curry Nua; your typical massaman beef curry and the Moo Gob Pik Pao; crispy stir fried pork belly with chilli jam, long chillis, cherry tomatoes and spring onions. Both dishes were enjoyable, but the clear favourite of the night was the Massaman Curry with unbelievably beautifully slow cooked beef. The pork belly was slightly overcooked – a little too crunchy and oversoaked with oil, losing the tenderness of pork belly.

The table service was a big tick who were very friendly and attentive throughout the entire course of the night (despite our trail of cocktails throughout) and of course, the cocktails are a double tick.

Spice I Am
296-300 Victoria Rd
Darlinghurst, Sydney
www.spiceiam.com

Spice I Am - the Restaurant on Urbanspoon

January 13, 2010

The Great Bagel & Coffee Co

by minibites

Sweet chili chicken bagel

I never understood why bagels never took off in Australia considering how americanised our society has become with the inflow of reality and drama TV shows, clothing, movies, and masses of fast food chains. I love a good bagel. Fresh and warm. I first spotted this little cafe at Bondi Junction but now with its expansion at a closer location, it’s a relief that someone has finally realised the potential to satisfy the niche market of bagel lovers! The bagels are crunchy on the outside and doughy on the inside with a set menu of bagel burgers or a generous selection of fresh fillings of your choice. And the curly fries aren’t bad either.

The Great Bagel & Coffee Co
Level 4, Shop 444
Macquarie Centre, Sydney

Great Bagel & Coffee Co on Urbanspoon