Archive for ‘Art Gallery’

March 28, 2012

The Blocks by Penfolds

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The Blocks by Penfolds

The Blocks by Penfolds is pop-up wine bar by the water. Nestled along the pier, the sky high warehouse is filled with art installations, wooden totems and plenty, plenty of wines. The concept of The Blocks is to provide the full experience from smelling totems, eating tasty morsels, subtle music and exploring intriguing art installations.

The Blocks by Penfolds

A glass of vino is in order at the bar before we wander through the five wooden totems… and we do as we’re told; drinking and smelling each one. One smells woody, one smell sweet and fruity while one is complex and requires multiple sniffs to decipher. Luckily, there are sommeliers around who guide us through each totem explaining the story behind each one and its correlating art installation.

The Blocks by Penfolds

In true form, I’m naturally drawn towards the multi-layered oak totem with a wave of fresh and fruity flavours, symbolising the aromatic whites family; your rieslings, sauvignons and pinot gris.  The multi layers represent the high altitudes which these grapes are grown. Gosh, I’d wish all furniture would smell this great!

The Blocks by Penfolds

Five Australian artists were also invited to design pieces for the event, with #3 being one of the hot favourites by Kit Webster. Representing the varietal blends, the blending of the wines; the artist uses the ripples from underneath the pier moulded together by images of grapes. I love #5 so do check that one out, especially the awesome story behind the Russian styled, Kirlian photography and capture of “aura” from vineyards.

The Blocks by Penfolds

It’s not all art, as slowly, the temptation of food baits us towards the back of the warehouse where communal tables are set up and a exquisite menu with matching wines. The creative menu is created by Chef Jock Zonfrillo using locally sourced ingredients, and of course with his repertoire and numerous of awards including winner of Restaurant of the Year (Magill Estate Restaurant, Adelaide) – there’s no denying why the dishes are so delectable.

Without spoiling too much of what’s to come, there’s a sneak peak below…

The Blocks by PenfoldsNative Pepper Crab

The Blocks by PenfoldsWagyu Beef w/ truffle 

The Blocks by PenfoldsPotato & Pork

The inside will be for you to discover! My absolute favourites is the native pepper crab, silky smooth wagyu beef and for dessert, the chocolate, current and myrtle; a perfect sweet end. Only nibble sized, so don’t be alarmed if you’re not satisfied by the end.

The Blocks by Penfolds

The Blocks by Penfolds

The installation has been organised by London based designers Studio Toogood and teamed up with Penfolds Bin & Luxury wines, great local artists and Chef Jock Zonfrilo. Get in quick before this closes as this is one amazing pop-up wine bar.

The Blocks by Penfolds is open 16th March till 5th April 2012. Reservations can be made at http://www.theblockslive.com or on 0407 412 640.

The Blocks by Penfolds
Pier 2/3, 13 Hickson Rd
Walsh Bay, Sydney
www.theblockslive.com

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August 8, 2011

Mission Bar & Restaurant

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Mission
Swing around the other corner of Chippendale, and there’s another gallery displaying contemporary Australia art. But nestled in the street floor of this old church is Mission Bar & Restaurant. Push through the refurnished french doors is a modern eatery with shiny polished floors, slick wooden furniture, bright orange feature walls and intriguing pieces of hanging art.

Mission

Mission

The menu is dynamic. From the blackboard specials showcasing chef specials for the day, there’s a range of dishes to cater for everyone’s tastes and nibbles. For lunch, there are fulfilling toasted sandwich options, while the menu dives into Mediterranean flavours that packs a punch. Not your everyday lunch spot but perfect for something a little special.

Mission
Slow roasted lamb shoulder with green cardamon, chilli & tahini 

Mission
Minute steak with caramelised onion, cheddar cheese & capsicum jam

To avoid falling into food coma, I opted for the safe option of the minute steak sandwiched between fresh seeded turkish bread. The steak was slightly overcooked, even for my raw phobia, but the juicy caramelised onions and house made capsicum jam made up for it. I did linger over my colleague’s lamb shoulder with envy, because it was absolutely delicious! Melt in your mouth meat with an abundance of flavours and textures. Delicious!

Mission

On a second occasion, I am back and it’s nice to see the feature walls with new pieces of intriguing art. We grab a seat on the casual couches as we’re both opting for some sandwiches that are only available for lunch.

MissionBalsamic braised corn beef w/ provolone, dijon mustard, tomato & pickled coleslaw

MissionPiri-piri roasted chicken w/ roasted corn, watercress & aioli

My lunch companion opts for the corned beef sandwich which sadly I didn’t get to pick at, it did get gobbled down quite quickly. Feeling clucky, I choose the piri-piri roasted chicken but unfortunately it felt like the chef accidently dropped the salt shaker into the mix. Hopefully this was a once off and my chicken isn’t salty next time…

Another great gallery cafe in a little alleyway for a little bit of artsyness and delicious food.

Mission & NG Art Gallery
3 Little Queen St
Chippendale, Sydney
www.missionbar.com.au 

Mission on Urbanspoon

July 12, 2011

Tea House @ White Rabbit Gallery

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White Rabbit Gallery

I love getting absorbed and lost in art galleries around town and White Rabbit is one of my absolute favourites. It always brings controversial and thought provoking pieces of contemporary Chinese art to the scene, and recently introduced dumplings to their tea house. Before every wander around, a pot of warm, beautiful tea and sunshine by the window is a definite must!

White Rabbit Gallery

The tea house is on the right of the entrance, and it’s gorgeous. White sky high ceilings hang the mismatching bronze and wooden bird cages, while sunshine floods through the large floor to roof windows. The wooden tables are all dressed elegantly with oriental red drapes and china teapots to match.

White Rabbit Gallery

The tea collection is quite extensive from the usual blends to some amazingly pretty choices. Teas slowly blossom as the afternoon progresses, pretty rose petals and chrysanthemum flowers. And all the fun is in smelling the selection before choosing.

White Rabbit Gallery

White Rabbit recently introduced homemade dumplings to nibble on in the tea house, and they’re deliciously soft and juicy. There are also selections of asian snacks from rice crackers, dried fruits and nuts.

White Rabbit Gallery

But hurry! The Decade of the Rabbit is currently on until July 31st and the gallery re-opens on August 25th with a new exhibit.

White Rabbit Gallery
30 Balfour St
Chippendale, Sydney
www.whiterabbitcollection.org

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April 19, 2010

The Restaurant, Art Gallery of NSW

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For my annual review, my boss takes me to visit one of his favourite rooms in Sydney, The Restaurant at the Art Gallery of NSW. It boasts beautiful views with roof to floor windows overlooking the harbour while the boats dock in and out. Clean lines, white linen, sparkling white crockery and shiny silverware.

Brioche crumbed duck sausage served with green lentil, raspberry vinaigrette

Opting to share an entree, we sample the brioche crumbed duck sausage. Definitely an intriguing dish, with a crispy brioche crumb with minced duck neatly tucked inside. The components were interesting on its own but when eaten with a mouthful of duck sausage, it was delicious.

Confit pork cheek served with pickled cabbage, apple, calvados sauce

Sirloin served with braised mushroom, white polenta, calvo nero and cherry tomatoes

For our mains, I opt for the meaty sirloin. Sadly, my sirloin is overcooked for medium, but the other components served on the dish were delicious. Wonderfully flavoured mushrooms, creamy white polenta and very juicy cherry tomatoes. Not as fancy as I imagined, but it was a simple dish cooked very well.

My boss opts for a cheekier dish on the menu; the confit pork cheek. The confit of meat was definitely gave a burst of flavour, and the meat was wonderfully lean and tender; but as much as I enjoy crispy pork crackling, the cheek skin was too crispy – I could have chipped a tooth! The calvados sauce, however, did absolutely wonders with this dish.

Chocolate & chestnut mousse cake and pistachio ice cream

To top off our lunch, we share a dessert. A beautiful chocolate mousse that melted in my mouth with a surprise nutty chestnut base. Not a crazed fan of pistachio flavoured foods, but this ice cream hit all the right notes. Subtle and perfectly sitting on a crunchy bed of crushed pistachio and brittle.

Lovely lunch for a day out at the art gallery.

The Restaurant
Art Gallery of NSW
Art Gallery Rd
Sydney
www.trippaswhite.com.au

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