Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Mexico - Food & Liquor

Pier, Ad Lib, Assiette, District Dining, Becasse franchise, Balzac, Bilson's, Berowa Waters Inn... What do these restaurants all have in common? They're all heavy hitters in the hospitality industry that have recently closed down. They also happen to be French. Does Sydney not have room for the luxury, the refinement, the richness that is French cuisine? It's only speculation up to this point. 

Sunday, 23 December 2012

Sixpenny, Stanmore

Sixpenny has opened earlier this year to critical acclaim. The unusual suburban location hasn't stopped die hard foodies from visiting this humble restaurant with the small restaurant seemingly unable to keep up with the attention. 

Saturday, 22 December 2012

MakMak, Newtown

If there's one thing that gets everyone's attention, it's the recent article on the best macaron by Time Out magazine that judged MakMak to be the best place for the little bitefulls. It certainly got mine. Having only recently opened a new pop up store in Newtown down King St, I was keen to try what they had on offer.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Bodega, Surry Hills

Bodega. What can I say that I haven't said already. It's bloody brilliant food. Such commendation would be reserved for the ending of this post but it's undeniable the fact that there is genius that lies behind this ever popular restaurant so why postpone it? Elvis Abrahanowicz, formerly of Porteno, has since returned to Bodega to grace it with his culinary presence. His return has brought with him an entirely new menu, energy charged and full of life.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Flour and Stone, Woolloomooloo

Good bakeries seem to be me and L's thing these days. That and me always waiting for her. I count half an hour late on her part very fortunate. Like the day we met up to go to Flour and Stone. It's a bakery a bit of a walk away from Town Hall station so away from the usual hustle and bustle of the city area. We came so late that all the savoury pies were sold out to our disappointment. No fear. They had plenty of sweets left much to my teeth's dismay.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Movida Sydney, Surry Hills

Movida has been a buzzing center point of Sydney's foodie attention of late. Having only recently opened it's doors, a typical booking would most likely promise failure on multiple attempts but like any good thing worth having, it takes a little time. 20 minutes on the phone in fact. Just waiting. 

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Adriano Zumbo Pâtissier, Pyrmont

The very famous Zumbo. There's not much I can say that will add to the ridiculously inflated hype and it's very much well deserved for the man behind the dessert empire. I've been keeping a close eye on his creations since his humble little store in Balmain in 2007 and his desserts have impressed Australia nationally for their inventive whimsicality. 

Friday, 7 December 2012

Bar Italia, Leichhardt

I've only lately discovered Sydney has its own little Italy in the town of Leichhardt (noob) and it presents so many exciting opportunities to explore every nook and cranny that the town has to offer. You walk down the strip of Norton street and nearly every restaurant, besides a Greek and 2 or 3 Japanese ones, is Italian. It appears neo-Italian bars dominate the area but it's the more traditional charming eateries that catch my eye. I was taken to Bar Italia by an old friend under recommendation that it was one of her favourite places to eat at. Not going to argue to with a self proclaimed Italian 'expert'.

Friday, 16 November 2012

Universal, Darlinghurst

Short post today. At least this form of procrastination hopefully gets my literacy skills up. I'll need it because my spelling is gradually becoming worse. Seriously. I think I'm just too used to marking incorrect writing that I've accepted it as the norm. My kids have just finished their Hsc and what better way to celebrate then with something that gets them away from their usual appalling diet of Mcdonald's happy meals. Universal is located right across Lucio's Pizzeria on the courtyard and is a convienient walk away for a quick drink or to satisfy the occasional sweet tooth.

Lucio's Pizzeria, Darlinghurst

Lucio's pizzeria is one of the many alfresco restaurants located on a courtyard down the strip of Liverpool street. I've been here numerous times but never got to blogging it and I thought it was about due for a posting. Lucio's Pizzeria is a family favourite. A friend favourite too because it's one of the places I love to bring my friends to.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

New Shanghai, Ashfield

Always keen for a good xiao long bao, we went down Ashfield one lazy Sunday afternoon hopeful to find a shop who offers it. Haha please. When walking into Ashfield, you'll encounter a multitude of dumpling options to choose from down the strip of Hume Highway and be hard pressed not to find a shop which offers xiao long bao. Which is a good thing. 

The interior looks fancy and it was promising to see the kitchen so efficient and high tech with the stainless steel and black smooth brickwork interior.

New Shanghai steamed mini pork bun 6.8
Xiao Long Bao arrive perfectly formed, plump and juicy. It is well seasoned already so taste it first before adjusting the saltage with soy sauce.

New Shanghai pan fried pork bun 8.8
The shen jian bao here are bloody brilliant. It's missing more of that much desired soup and the dough's a bit much but the bottom... Oh crispy bottom exterior. There's nothing quite like it. It's just brilliant how insanely crispy ours were. 

Sliced fresh fish congee 7.8
A very unadorned congee is a very unappreciated thing; it comes missing the usual garnishes but the simplicity is pleasantly remarkable on our end. The chunks of fish were incredibly fresh with none of that fishy taste which was nice and only perfumed with thin hits of light ginger.

Beef in five special sauce noodle soup 8.8
Beef noodle arrives but it comes not quite the way we expect it. I think I'm too used to the large moreish chunks of slow cooked beef, deep, heady broth and thick ramen but this pleasantly surprises. The lighter, almost medicinal broth can be very much credited to the 5 spice along with the thin slices of beef which results in a pleasant finish to the evening.

As seems to be sadly accepted within most Chinese restaurants, service seems to be a bit irregular but I'm hardly there for the service. Still it does leave sort of a sour note. Chairs are placed within doorways and often you'll sit forgotten waiting to grab a waiters attention but on the bright side they are incredibly efficient. It's undeniably delicious food and the locals would certainly agree with me.

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New Shanghai on Urbanspoon

Monday, 12 November 2012

n2 Extreme Gelato, Chinatown

Liquid nitrogen seems to be the current craze of 2012. It's been out for a while; chefs have been using it in nearly everything (exaggeration) but n2 extreme gelato can quite be credited with making it popular to the public. Nothing quite like seeing some smoke billowing from your gelato right?

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Mother Chu's Taiwanese Gourmet, Chinatown

This is hardly the first time I've been to Mother Chu's. Always packed with keen eaters, you'll be hard pressed to find Mother Chu's empty at any given time of the day. As a family favourite, we already know what to pick and what to avoid.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Duke Bistro - The Duke's Regale, Surry Hills

Duke's Bistro, often described as the hipsters hideout, is known as much for it's edgy fit out as it is for its eclectic and experimental creativity. Browsing through 2012's list of Crave Sydney dinners reveals a fair few promising dinners. Unfortunately, my meager budget leaves me very careful about the places I choose. If you're really interested in a dinner, here's my advice: the day the calender for October comes out, seize that opportunity to find the events you like and book them quick. A lot of the events get booked out in a couple of days and most after a fortnight if i'm not mistaken so the early bird really gets the worm.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Taste the Chase, Chatswood

Thank you to Jocelyn from magenta for inviting me to cover the Taste the Chase. It was a bit disorganised with the whole interview dilemma but we did manage to happily get there in the end. 

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Rockpool Bar and Grill, CBD

Neil Perry's building quite a stable food empire these days, looking to ambitiously expand abroad. A jump into high risk, high reward openings has been incredibly successful for him and was built around hard work and ambition. It's not the first time I've been to Rockpool Bar and Grill. I've had the wagyu burger here before and whilst not the best burger, it came pretty damn close. And of course onion rings and chocolate jaffa mousse cake followed up after that and were just brilliant. It's been a while since I came back but I managed to convince a friend to go (the lure of watching Looper proved helpful).

Rockpool Bar and Grill is almost an iconic Sydney space in it's own right. In stating the glossy green marble columns, art deco building, dark stained oak tables, leather seats, neon purple tinted windows, open stainless steel kitchens, legions of white jacketed front house..., I'm describing what countless others will have already recognised. It's cool without being outlandish and edgy, sophisticated and grand without being too intimidating (it is initially) and I'm all for it. But you know the usual story, dark lighting and plating make for terrible photos so let that be the last we ever speak of it.

henney's dry cider 15
The Henney's cider had a pricey mark up but was delicious with a fair bit of tannin; needless to say it was dry but it pleasantly bittersweet with only a sadly mild apple flavour.

Bread and butter start us off although we can hardly stop at one serving.

Brioche with Slow Cooked Hen's Egg with Bone Marrow and Red Wine Butter Sauce 21
Brioche, good. Gorgeously silky, oozy, slow-cooked egg, good. Sweet cooked down onions doused in a rich red wine jus, goooood. (Friends reference by the way, Rachel's trifle), but what really does it for me are the small discs of pale bone marrow with pink centres that is truly the epitome of foodie joy. Only just holding together, the melting fattiness is beyond mesmerizing.  

Cape Grim Dry Aged 36 Month Old Grass Fed Scotch Fillet 220g 49
Various condiments are offered with the your steak but it comes unadorned, with none of the suspect chips and salad, except a wedge of lemon which is more than enough. A had the scotch fillet grass fed that felt, despite the lighting, was a little more on the medium side rather than the medium rare we ordered. The incredibly pungent harrisa has the slightest bit of heat and tastes almost Indiany/ Moroccan whereas the bearnaise was much more rounded and light in flavour with the usual hints of tarragon bringing it up.

Cape Grim Dry Aged 36 Month Old Grass Fed Rib-eye on the Bone 350g 60
My experiences with wagyu, besides the wagyu brisket from Marque, have been bafflingly disappointing given all the hype that surrounds it. I choose, instead, a grass fed rib eye which I found more giving than the previous sirloin and it has me imagining how much more tender a grain fed could of possibly been. It had a robust complexity and a gorgeous crust going on although the charring from the wood-fried grill resulted in a few burnt bits that were bitter. And of course gnawing on the bone isn't exactly the most civilized thing to do but it's always the best bit. 

"Mac and Cheese" 9
Our Mac and Cheese was superbly cheesy and rich; featuring a gratinated top, a mixture of gruyere, parmesan and cheddar and was just beyond delicious.

Royal Blue Potatoes Sauteed with Wagyu Fat and Rosemary 12
The potatoes with rosemary are a must have here, hearty, soft and crispy with the distinctive licking of meaty fat.

Rockpool Bar and Grill isn't on the cheaper end of the dining spectrum; there are steaks here that run for 110 dollars and a caviar toast that goes for 600. In saying that, you do get what you pay for; all the ingredients are superb and quality driven. It's beautiful, hearty, well cooked food although it could do with a little more needle-like precision that comes with the expectations bounded with the place. The professional service is incredibly consistent and has you well looked after. It's the sort of place you'd take someone out to impress; the food isn't polarising as opposed to the some of the other places I've been to lately although the bill in the end might be. I begrudgingly admit I didn't manage to finish all of it which I found surprising given I can polish any degustation with ease. Must have been all the potatoes and servings of bread I hard earlier. We came out bursting at the seams and very content however I'll leave that 110 steak for some other day, maybe when someone else is paying...

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Rockpool Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

Friday, 5 October 2012

The Devonshire, Surry Hills

The October food month has had me flicking on a keen eye for good deals. Many restaurants have experienced that infamous rise in prices and uni budgets aren't exactly that great. Just missing out on Star Grazing at Star City by a couple of days, The Devonshire on Devonshire St comes out as a very appealing alternative on Thursday. 

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Black Star Pastry, Newtown

Newtown - a treasure trove of fashion trends, 6.50 thai, music, street art and good food as i'm slowly discovering. Whilst passing Oscillate Wildly the other night, I spotted a quaint little bakery next door and it turns out it was the famous Black Star Pastry. Christopher The is the genius at work here, formerly of 2 hatters Universal and Claudes, Christopher has since left and opened up a little patisserie in the heart of Newtown.  I haven't had much time to visit it lately but I knew a visit was inevitable sooner or later.

Friday, 21 September 2012

Crust Masterclass @ cheeky food group, Surry Hills

Thank you very much to Laura Cario from Liquid Ideas for inviting me to a Crust Masterclass inside cheeky food group's headquarters. It's my first and hopefully not my last invited event and it's a rather intimidating and at the same time comforting sensation being in the same room as multiple like-minded individuals. There's no disapproving eyebrows to be found to indicate that maybe, just maybe... I should stop talking about what I had for dinner the other night or maybe I should stop waving my arms  around erratically in public to exemplify how you emulsify a hollandaise. 

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Ladurée, Sydney

I've been having Laduree envy ever since my monthly (lately weekly) fine dining partner A spent 3 days in Paris and all 3 days were spent in Ladurée. Macarons, fruits and champagne for breakfast, macarons and sandwiches for lunch, panfried salmon and macarons for dinner, needless to say she made her experience sound so magical that ever since I've been frantically following the opening of Ladurée. 

Cantina Mobil, Camperdown

Let's face it, your uni being the centre attention of food trucks is pretty good. With EatArtTruck, Agapé and Cantina Mobil making regular rounds at Sydney Uni, we're really feeling the love. With EatArtTruck selling out delicious goodies on a weekly basis, Cantina Mobil with its burritos, nachos and tacos itself appears very promising.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Shanghai Night, Ashfield

Busy restaurateurs have been recently capitalizing on the recent craze over dumplinga, what with Din Tai Fung opening it's multiple franchises and the newly opened Mr Wong that's drawing in droves. For me, however, it's the forgotten street down Liverpool Road in Ashfield that needs the attention; all the Xiao Long Bao without the premium prices. Every third store (slight exaggeration) are Shanghainese Xiao Long Bao specialists. No foodie can possibly resist that treasure trove of goodness now there.

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Oscillate Wildly, Newtown

Oscillate Wildly. I know, sounds like more a theme park ride than anything else but down Newtown it just happens to be a restaurant. One of the most widely sought after restaurants in the area in fact, known for their adventurous creativity that's a delight to many. And at 100 dollars a degustation, it's one of the cheapest you'll find.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Mr Wong, CBD

I thought the longest queues in Wynyard were at Jamie's. I was wrong. Only 3 weeks in, newly opened Merivale restaurant Mr Wong has been a huge success of late run by executive chef Dan Hong as well as a few other big names in Chinese cooking. Located in literally what is a back alley, Mr Wong is easy to miss for those who aren't directly looking for the restaurant. For those who are, be prepared to brave through some serious stench from opposing restaurant's wastes as well as massive queues.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Gelato Messina, Surry Hills

Ice blocks, sorbet, ice cream, gelato, what do they all have in common? The fact that they are all wildly inappropriate to consume during a 4 degree celsius winter night. But has that fact really stopped anyone? One can argue that excess consumption of the stuff will lead to increased fat storage which will lead to warmer nights so.............. yeah.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Milk Bar by Cafe Ish, Redfern

Previously famous for their all you can ribtacular special on Wednesdays, Cafe Ish has since departed and made way towards Redfern. What it promises is a classic Australian and American selection of delights with an asian twist. Keen to try out this, I headed down to Redfern on my first break of the week. 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Circa Espresso, Parramatta

I know so little about Parramatta. Besides the food court in westfields and a few decent asian eateries littered around the area, Parramatta to me isn't exactly the most bubbling hub of foodie centric delights. However, searching around, you can't help but be drawn in to Circa  with its easing going yet upbeat nature, even if it is over a computer screen so a real visit was going to happen sooner or later.

Cappucino 3.5
I didn't have a coffee, fearful that I would just crash in the midst of a crucial scene in TDKR later on that night. My friend tells me it's aromatic and a bit bitter but we were both fascinated by the little coffee art. The little things in life.

Baked eggs with sujak, danish fetta, tomato & chilli 14
Judging from other blogs, their baked eggs has to be by far one of their most popular dishes. Or pans should I say. Tomatoes, fetta and sujak sausage give it big robust flavours and the smell is intoxicating. 

Portobello Mushrooms in a sourdough with hummus and rocket salad 12
The mushrooms were cooked superbly, big and meaty but balanced brilliantly with with a nutty hummus and an acidic salad. The sourdough was a little disappointing as it eventually gets drenched in the juices and just gets all tough and cardboardy. The previously replaced brioche may have faired a lot better.

Banana bread with house made passion fruit butter 6
I wasn't here for the bread but luminous yellow passionfruit butter caught my eye. Viscous, tart and sweet, it goes really well with the banana bread.

Circa is the ultimate care free day, long slow brunch, talk endlessly whilst losing yourself sort of place and you'd be hard pressed finding any other place like it around the area. Cue Bruno Mar's The lazy song. Their menu changes daily so you'll never get bored. It's little wonder, despite being hidden away from the main street, from breakfast till lunch that the crowds never die down even on a gloomy rainy day.

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Circa on Urbanspoon

No, we aren't the most amazing gastronomes or chefs. Heck, half our team doesn't even know how to cook... well. However, what we really love is eating. And lots of it. We enjoy that occasional freebie, filling up that craving for a midnight snack and finding a 20 in our pockets that we thought we never had, and using that as an excuse to go out eating. As we battle the ongoing war on uni student poverty, we'll bring you the most swoon worthy recounts of our latest foodie adventures.