Posts tagged ‘creme brulee’

January 27, 2013

Hartsyard

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Hartsyard

Hartsyard gets it right. It’s a little restaurant that has found the right balance of being innovative yet keeping the it real. We’re a chatty bunch, but the food gives us silent intermissions between each dish as we munch.

HartsyardSalmon Cooked in a Jar

Seated with a menu in hand, it’s common courtesy to ask the others what they’re keen for tonight. “Meat! Lots of meat!” my Russian dining companion demands and we’re lucky. The menu is divided into Seed & Feed, with “seed” being nibblish, yet still a very substantial portion. “Feed” are the larger dishes, but all in all, are designed to share.

Our only “seed” is a jar filled with salmon. Yes, I had to admit there was a little pre-assumption that the jar is a bit of smoke and mirrors. But no, it was one of the best smoked salmon with boasting credentials the next day. A fresh dollop of creme fraiche on the side, greens, pickled gherkins and home baked rye bread crisps.

Hartsyard Peachy Keen Sour

There’s a bountiful of cocktails to choose from, while my Pisco Punch is good, it wasn’t as fabulous as the Peachy Keen Sour with pieces of stewed peaches at the bottom.

Hartsyard

Pulled Pork

The first of our “feed” dishes arrive and a fat, glistering slice of maple bacon sits on top of our cube of pulled pork. With my new fisheye lens, I also capture my poor, yet patient dining companions eyeing the dishes to dive straight in.

The dish is so well juxtaposed with a less than beautiful looking piece of meat with fresh apples, shards of pork rind, fennel and yoghurt. The maple bacon is sweet and heart clogging but oh so good long with tender pieces of pulled pork below. My only complaint is that I wished I fought for more of it.

Hartsyard

Fried Chicken

With luck, I’m dining with like-minded friends tonight and I jump at the opportunity to grab some fried chicken. It’s been a craving that I’ve been trying to suppress, but this this hit the spot. Crunchy, flavoursome and succulent on the inside, I was happily munching on my drumstick with my fingers and wiping the crumbs off my face, while the others were gracifully eating theirs with cutlery.

Hartsyard

Smoked Wagyu Brisket

The last “feed” is the smoked wagyu brisket, and hello! This is melt-in-your mouth goodness and served with an arrangement of pickled and fried greens with a bbq mayo.

Hartsyard

Maple Brulee

The night ends with the maple brulee, served quite naked without its usual white ramekin bowl. A crunchy dome, silky brulee, slivers of Palmier pastry, scoops of cherry ice cream, cherries and an interesting walnut coffee crunch.

IMG_5193

On the quieter end of Enmore Rd, Hartsyard is a mix of clean and grungy basement interiors, dishing up some great feeds. The menu changes almost every time the seasons do which gives a great reason to keep coming back for more.

Hartsyard
33 Enmore Rd
Newtown, Sydney
www.hartsyard.com.au

Hartsyard on Urbanspoon

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November 16, 2011

Bourke Street Bakery, Surry Hills

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Bourke St Bakery

Throw out your diets and detoxes, and don’t even think about coming over to Bourke St Bakery if you’re not ready to indulge. I know Bourke St Bakery is not the newest spot on the block, but it ceases to amaze me how many people know little of it. So here’s my plug and photos of what I think is one of the most amazing bakeries around Sydney.

Bourke St Bakery

Don’t be alarmed as you walk down to see a snaking queue around the corner with hungry carb-goers trying to fit through the tiny entrance. Bourke St Bakery has plenty of savoury pastry delights from sausage rolls, meat pies to sugar heaven of tarts, tarts and more tarts!

Bourke St Bakery Meat pie

Bourke St Bakery
Pork & Fennel Sausage Roll

Bourke St Bakery
Raspberry Chocolate Mousse Tart

There are so many things to choose from that you’ll be spoilt for choice, but I definitely love the piping hot pork & fennel sausage roll and the chocolate mousse tart with a hidden burst of raspberry tucked inside. The creme brulee tarts are also a hit with silky smooth custard topped with a crunchy, sugar topping. And if you’re sourhead, definitely go for a shot of the addictive yet sour lemon tarts.

Bourke St Bakery

They also bottle up some great chocolate milkshakes and juices, coffee and teas to wash down all the goodness.

Bourke St Bakery

Bourke St Bakery

Surry Hills is the hot favourite, but it’s now open in Alexandria, Marrackville and Potts Point with a lot more breathing space.

Bourke St Bakery
633 Bourke St
Surry Hills, Sydney
www.bourkestreetbakery.com.au 

Bourke Street Bakery on Urbanspoon

August 17, 2011

Jazushi

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Jazushi

There’s always an occasion for live music and good food; blind first dates, reunions, meeting the in-laws; all potential cases for long silences and awkward pauses. Jazushi’s been around for a while now, nestled on a corner on Devonshire St. The interior is bare with exposed brick walls and a few framed records and paintings, but the ambience is warm and chilled out at the same time.

Dinner tonight is a farewell for my colleague and in particular from my team, so her bright smile and samba moves will be missed. The set menu is organised at $55 per person with all dishes served banquet style.

JazushiSalmon & Kingfish Carpaccio

Jazushi
Green Tea Noodle Salad 

Japanese at Jazushi is contemporary but keeps true to its roots. The salmon & kingfish carpaccio is a minefield of flavours with even the pickest eaters munching on a few slices.

The green tea noodle salad is intriguing, a cold noodle mixed through a mix salad with a sweet soy onion dressing. Seemingly bland on paper but filled with amazing flavour for such a humble salad.

JazushiSilver Cod w/ Saikyo Sauce

JazushiCamembert Tempura

Next are bite sized pieces of silver cod flavoured with saikyo sauce, which is one of the most amazing fish dishes I have ever had and, my favourite of the night. Saikyo is a sweet miso based sauce, using more rice than soybeans and uses less salt than normal misos, reducing it to a sweeter, buttery taste.

Cheese is not one of my favourite things (being lactose intolerant explains why…) but I had to give the tempura a go. Cheesy, but not as intense had I imagined and the batter was devilishly crunchy.

JazushiJFC 

JazushiMixed sushi 

The main dishes began to roll out and of course, the JFC was on the menu with many izakaya styled restaurants following suit. The JFC was Jazuhi’s Fried Chicken with a lighter karaage style batter served with yuzu citrus sauce and tartare sauce. And of course, a few nigiri pieces with sneaky dots of wasabi underneath…

JazushiKakuni Pork Belly

Dishes of pork belly begin to roll out and we all salivate over its tenderness. The pork belly is melt-in-your-mouth tender as it’s cooked kakuni styled; meaning cubes of pork belly simmered in dashi, soy, mirin, sugar and sake and being slow cooked, all the fat begins to break down, mmm! The dishes didn’t stop there with the final dish of Wagyu beef steak served with sweet teriyaki and garlic sauce, and by this time I had fallen into a food coma.

JazushiCreme Brulee 

The top of the night, it’s a creme brulee in the tiniest ramekin, and it’s no wonder the Japanese stay so thin by keeping their dessert portions!

Jazushi

Perfect for delicious contemporary Japanese delights and sways to live jazz music every night.

Jazushi
145 Devonshire St
Surry Hills, Sydney
www.jazushi.com.au

Jazushi on Urbanspoon

May 9, 2011

The Villager Hotel, Brisbane

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The Villager

The Villager

In my 36 hour visit to Brisbane, I experienced their highs; gorgeous sunny and blue skies, a warm balmy Autumn night through to their lows; flash flooding and severe thunderstorms. It was all work and little play, but we did manage to sneak a delicious dinner at The Villager Hotel dishing up gastropub styled food. Gastropub food is simply a term coined from England where two pub owners decided to up the playing field of pub food.

The streets of Brisbane were empty (it was Labour Day so it was assumed everyone had already drank the day away) and we were struggling to find something, anything open! The gorgeous high ceiling, dim lighting, exposed brick walls and wooden floors lured us inside.

The Villager

The Villager
“Bacon and Egg”

The Villager
Confit Pork Belly

The chefs at The Villager Hotel haven’t held back and it shows on their menu. For shared entrees, we try their twist on Bacon & Egg and a confit pork belly. An oozing sous vide egg hugs a long piece of jamon, a Spanish type of cured ham – all topped with crispy bread crumbs and truffle mayo. Amazing, amazing textures. The confit pork belly was a little on the tougher side, but crispy indeed – each topped with an sweet orange gel.

The Villager
Duck Breast

Our shared main is a sous vide duck breast on a bed of potato mash and creamed corn. Duck was never my protein of choice, mainly because as a child, I had too many roast ducks that hung from the BBQ shops of Chinatown; that were overcooked, oily and intensely fatty. This was cooked perfectly – succulent and tender with the crispy skin. Mmmm… not to mention, the simplicity of the jus, silky potato mash and sweet creamed corn. Double mmm…

The Villager
Passionfruit Creme Brulee

The Villager
Eton’s Mess

To end, we devour a double dessert delight; my foodie companion’s choice, a passionfruit creme brulee with brandy snap to match her sour preference, and for me, Eton’s Mess. We glee at delight when the creme brulee has a strong solid crack. It’s a mix of sweet and sour with a warm, sugary brandy snap.

Eton’s Mess is an interesting twist, traditionally a mess of meringue, cream and berries. This dish was more of a sophiscated mess; with sour strawberry jellies, sweet strawberries and jam, vanilla bean cream and all topped with meringue sticks. Delish!

The Villager

It’s a double win when you’re able to sit in a chilled out bar with the option of sous vide duck breast, creme brulee and cocktails instead of wedges with sweet chilli sauce.

The Villager Hotel
185 George St, Brisbane
www.thevillager.com.au

The Villager on Urbanspoon

February 27, 2011

Nu’s Restaurant

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Confession. I’m actually the let’s-just-chill-at-home and the very unromantic one in the relationship. We met for the first time (and sorta had our first date) on Valentines’ Day many, many years ago! We’re not huge hallmark celebrators, but this year he organised a low key dinner at Nu’s Restaurant. Nu’s is a little corner restaurant on an amazing street that smells of food as you stroll along it, gorgeous terraces and views of the tips of the harbour.

Avocado tartlets with crispy squid

Betal leaves with pork belly and sweet quail egg

To wet our appetites is a double dose of entree; a perfect bite size of mouthful of cold avocado paste topped with a crisp squid, and shame it was only a mouthful worth… The other entree was a betal leaf packed with shredded pork belly, herbs topped with a sweet quail egg.

Singha beer battered barramundi fillet

Panang curry with chicken and kaffir lime

For mains, we shared a Singha beer battered barramundi with an amazing crispy crust sitting on a bed of green mango, chilli, coriander and roasted peanuts. The salad was refreshing and light with a zing and a tang. Next up was a light panang chicken curry served in a huge bottomless coconut. Super light with generous amounts of chicken pieces and just the right amount of spice (for me at least!).

Coconut creme brulee

To finish, we crack the warm sugary layer of a delicious coconut creme brulee and cold coconut sorbet to satisfy our sweet tooth.

Delicious meal in a gorgeous naturally lit restaurant (which I love!!). Thank you mister.

Nu’s Restaurant
178 Blues Point Rd
McMahon’s Point, Sydney
www.nusrestaurant.com.au

Nu's Thai on Urbanspoon