Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog


Petit Fours: a Sydney food blog

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Taste of Sydney Food Festival, Centennial Park

When the annual food fest rolls around the corner, I can't help but get all excited. Free crap, stalls, food at a price cheaper than in the restaurants, no bookings, parklands. Yes please. Don't expect any lineup equivalent to Future, Stereosonic, Soundwave, Super K-pop fest etc though, instead, all the up and coming restaurants take the opportunity to showcase all their best plates, where the only weed in sight is the rare occasional shrub growing out of the otherwise unblemished lawn and your legs get sore rather than your ears getting sore. What both have in common though is alot and alot of alcohol. Alot.

Thursday rains threatened to ruin the day; my uni even had their football fields turn into a pool with ducks swimming and dogs paddling in it and all, I shit you not. We were on the news. But it turned out to be a gorgeous day, not a cloud in sight. Optimism does that. I rather ambitiously organised a group of 15 to turn up to the event but we ended up just splitting into groups and roaming the parklands seperately. A kind thank you to the wonderful Syl for providing me these photos. Had I the exact same camera, they wouldn't of even remotely turned out as good.

Kadayif Wrapped King Prawns, Walnut Capsicum Muhamara (Efendy) 

Traditional Charcoal BBQ Lamb and Veal Kebab, Smoked Eggplant and Chobani Greek Yoghurt (Efendy)

Pistachio Trio of Traditional Baklava, Dolma and Kadayif (Efendy)
Pan Fried Lamb Testicles with Almond Tarrator (Efendy)
Apparently these taste like fish balls but I didn't have the errr... balls to eat this so I wouldn't know.

Fried Hawkesbury School Prawns, Proscuitto and Rouille (Quarter 21) 

People sometimes get iffy about having prawns, shells and all. When I was young, I cut my lip once because some of them are really sharp and I was too lazy to remove the shells so I just ate the whole thing. Lesson learnt. Today, no makeshift blades left in this pot of goodness fortunately, but you still need to be careful. Rouille was delightful and with the smoky salty proscuitto makes a wicked combination.

Salt Cod, Potato and Truffle Fritters with Tarragon Mayonaise

Give me this everyday and I'll be happy. Crisp on the outside and impossibly soft in the inside, the potato permeates with the slight flavours of earthy truffle making this a real winner.

Salmon Crudo, Baby Beetroot, Yoghurt, Olive Dust (Ormeggio at the Spit / Spiedo)
I really liked this. Brilliantly done combination with ingredients changed into interesting forms with an unparalleled clarity in flavours. Wasn't what I was expecting but still thoroughly enjoyed.
Gundoee Wagyu Sirloin, Slow Braised Brisket,
Honey Roasted Carrots, Royal Black Quinoa & Truffle Butter (Agapé Organic Restaurant and Bar)

Had this next but I ended up being dissappointed, especially from the asking price of 20 crowns. There's a lot going on in this one dish and everything worked so well together, carrots well cooked, braised rib deliciously fall apart and surprisingly the licquorice adds an welcome aniseedie, earthy dimension but the sirloin was overcooked to the point of medium well and you lose alot of that supposed meltingness that you would associate with wagyu. The truffle was disappointingly lost throughout all the flavours.

Ping Pong:
Lychees and Passionfruit Pulp are added to Erinstoff Vodka, Lychees and Fresh Lime Juice (Longrain Bar)
I abhor alcohol seriously. The smell, the taste. It bemuses me how some people could drink the stuff on a daily basis. I suppose one day I'll grow up to enjoy it. But not for now. Ping Pong however was delightful: fruity and sweet with lychees and passionfruits and only a little kick of vodka to remind you it's a cocktail and you're there to get giddy.

Slow Cooked and Caramelised Short Rib with Bone Marrow Persillade (Quarter 21)

Free Yoghurt! It was okay
We were offered both desserts at Montpellier for a 14 for 2 price saving us 8 crowns which was an absolute no brainer so we immediately took it.

Eton Mess (The Montpellier Public House)

Eton mess was simple, but as a classic should also be; it was also delicious. The right amount of sweetness from the meringue and chantilly really to showcases the quality of the strawberries.

Pepe Saya Buttermilk and Vanilla Panna Cotta with Poached Fruits (The Montpellier Public House)

The pannacotta was also a winner, melting and wobbly, dosed with a generous amount of vanilla seeds and again highlights the tart and sweetness of the berries and coullis. 

At the end of the day, it really is all about trying everything possible rather than making an effort to really think about the food itself. But it's good to have that opportunity to not need to think so hard and just eat things cause they're handed to you for free. More than excited to go back next year. Here's to me hoping that all the expensive restaurants sign up again so we get to try cheap food again. Some of the restaurants have dishes at their stands where the normal price would be 2 or 3 times more expensive. The food is admittedly good, though not great. If you want the restaurant experience, go to the restaurant. I think I'll be giving Montpellier a visit soon.

My tips:
1 Get there early so you don't have to fight for shady spots.

2 Plan your day out according to what events you want to attend beforehand

3 Know what you want to eat from the menu so you won't walk around aimlessly 

4 The 30 dollar entrance fee can be a bit criminal but look around and you'll find that there are deals around. We got our tickets on ticketek for 35 for 2 which was pretty awesome

5 THERE ARE MANY FREEBIES if you know where to look for them. And they're pretty decent as well. Crowns are overated when you can just raid store to store for yummy samples. But of course half the point is trying the restaurants at cheaper prices so do buy a few.

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Oh Mr. C so funny :P
Good post, but thing is you didn't say where half the dishes were from (which expensive restaurant we robbed for cheaper deals), but besides that no criticism

ahaha alrite thanks. I'll edit it now. I'm sure the restaurants made a profit too.

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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.

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