Adelaide has jumped aboard the ‘rooftop bar’ bandwagon with 2KW, a sleek, sophisticated venue with stellar views across the city. Dear friends of mine treated me to lunch there, and we worked our way through the ‘Let Us Feed You’ menu ($65 pp). The first course was 2 freshhly shucked West Coast oysters each – large, plump and perfect with a drizzle of lemon. Next up was the Chacuterie plate, with proscuitto, peach, blue cheese, and greens, all coming together to create a delicate balance of flavours that was pure pleasure. The portion was generous and delicious. There was quite a long wait between courses here, but the Clare Valley chicken with achiote (a Caribbean spice) and chargrilled orange was worth the wait. Drizzling the orange juice on top, we devoured the tender meat, relishing the coriander on top and keen to find out where to get achiote from (it’s amazing!). The final dish was the Jack Creek 120 day grain-fed scotch fillet, served with chimmichurri and grilled spring onions. I was pretty full at this point, but oh man was that steak good. My only criticism was that it was served medium, without having asked us (we definitely would have gone medium-rare), but otherwise it was a delight, tender and well-matched with the accompaniments. Oh, and the side of triple-cooked salt and vinegar potatoes deserves its own blog post – to die for! Please eat some for me on your visit.
2KW Bar and Restaurant, 2 King William Street, Adelaide SA, https://www.2kwbar.com.au/
Part one of this review is here. We ordered two of the hot meze, starting with the charcoal octopus served with witlof and tomato ezme, a salad made from tomato, garlic, onion and parsley ($23). The dish was simple and very effective, with the perfectly charcoaled octopus meat packed with flavour and presented to its best advantage with little adornment. The ezme was a refreshing accompaniment, balanced well by the bitterness of the witlof. Finally, on the manager’s recommendation, we chose the Hanger beef fillet, with field mushrooms and maple-cured pastirma ($38). The beef is sourced from butcher Victor Churchill, and is rested for 250 days. Cooked medium-rare and sliced to reveal beautiful marbling, this prime cut was tasty and tender. But it transformed into something magic in combination with the juicy, plump mushrooms that melted in the mouth and the sweet pastirma straps – a mouthful with everything was utter perfection. We all sat there, stunned as each dish came out as excellent as the last, wishing we had stomach space for another one. Sadly we didn’t have room for dessert either, but this will not be our last visit, for sure.
Anason, 5/23 Barangaroo Avenue, Barangaroo NSW, http://anason.com.au/
Wandering through Barangaroo, Anason’s vibrant blue doors stand out against the concrete and hanging plants. Headed up by chef Somer Sivrioglu, Anason brings a taste of Turkey to Sydney’s newest district, the plates structured as meze to share. Everything here is done with class, and first up I have to say the service was above and beyond. All the tables are alfresco (with a few bar stools inside), and heaters were turned on to combat the evening breeze. We were stepped through the menu, and I couldn’t resist the call of white cod roe tarama ($16), topped with fingerlime and served with tiny rounds of sesame bread, like croutons. The dip was perfectly salty and creamy, with a delicate roe flavour and a fabulous pop and slight tartness from the fingerlime. We ordered a side of pita bread ($3 per piece), which was sprinkled with very fine dukkha and went perfectly with the dip. Dish two was generously provided on the house – cured salmon pastirma (usually $21), served with fennel and pickled chilli. The salmon is coated in the same spices as beef pastrami, and left to hang for 18 hours. The dish retains the salmon’s flavour, while absorbing the gorgeous mix of spices – the pickled chilli is flavoursome rather than spicy, and the portion is generous and filling. Part two to follow.
Anason, 5/23 Barangaroo Avenue, Barangaroo NSW, http://anason.com.au/
When an old friend came to visit from Adelaide, it was a tough call deciding where to head for dinner, but in the end Joe’s Bar won the day. The place was buzzing, and we managed to snag a couch seat. We started with the Ollo d’Oro ($8), a selection of three olive oils with bread for dipping. The different oil flavours were quite apparent, making the taste-test fun and a perfect way to whet our appetite. A little more bread would have been nice, for the amount of oil. Second was the polenta chips (without gorgonzola sauce, for our lactose-intolerant stomaches, $10). These were beautifully cooked and presented, topped with rosemary, salt and edible flowers, we polished them off quickly and with relish. The crisp outside was matched by a delightfully soft inside, and they weren’t dry, even without the sauce. Finally, we indulged in the D’Affettatl, a selection of cured meats and salami ($24 for the large). This cornucopia of meaty goodness included proscuito (probably my favourite), bresaola, mortadella (with a nice peppery hit) and ‘Nduja Calabrese, a spicy, spreadable meat, plus pork salami. Oh, and a cold salad of eggplant, capscium and tomato. And some olives. Phew. All was delicious, and we enjoyed an evening picking away at the shared platter. All dishes highly recommended.
Joe’s Bar, East Hotel, 69 Canberra Avenue, Kingston ACT, http://www.joesateast.com/
I really think that Bread & Bone make the best burgers in Adelaide. There’s something magical about the way they take familiar flavours and boost them into the stratosphere. The burgers aren’t huge, but they’re filling and delicious and I can’t get enough. On this visit, I went back to the B&B burger ($18) – I’m not too sure I’ll ever want to order anything else from the menu, as this classic has kept up the hype and all of the magnificent flavour I adored last time. With a nicely toasted bun, oozy melted cheese and the killer combination of a high-quality beef patty and bacon (although not as much bacon as last time), the balance of flavours and textures is any burger-lover’s dream. Sure, there’s some lettuce and tomato in there to balance things out, but they play second fiddle to the rest of the ingredients. The fries remain impeccable, and were dished up in a generous serving that I couldn’t quite finish. They were perfectly seasoned and were just crisp enough for my preference. As usual, the staff were very friendly, and we were able to linger happily resting our feet after a long morning of walking. I’ll be back for round three ASAP.
Bread & Bone Wood Grill, 15 Peel Street, Adelaide SA, no website
Bar Rochford had a great vibe going when my friend and I arrived just after 6pm on a Friday night. We snagged two seats at the bar, and started with the Stormy Monday cocktail ($16). With aged rum, house-made ginger beer, lime and bitters, we were astounded at how strong the ginger was, to the point of being a bit much (more like chilli in terms of heat). I sipped cautiously throughout the night. We started with a plate of three cold cuts – finocchiona, proscuitto and coppe ($20). Each was generously portioned and delicious, although the proscuitto was cut a tad thick for my taste. We then ordered from the specials menu – the roast duck with crispy skin and beetroot. This was a complete delight, with well-seasoned skin and tasty meat that was just past pink but not tough. The foam on the plate didn’t really have a flavour, but the beetroot had an intense earthy taste which complemented the duck perfectly. Finally, still going on the cocktail, we ordered a plate of hand-cut chips ($8), served with a spiced tomato relish. These were so moreish I could have eaten them all night. Yum!
Bar Rochford, first floor, 65 London Circuit, Canberra ACT, http://www.barrochford.com/
I’ve never actually had dessert at Monster, so after a scrumptious dinner there with Dad (pork neck bao, best lamb ever), we decided to share a dessert as I finished off my Lyneham cocktail ($19). The cocktail was an unusual blend of gin, capsicum, black tea, lychee and lemon – it had a suprisingly savoury taste which I quite liked, with a stronger capsicum flavour than I had expected. Definitely a sophisticated drink. The dessert menu doesn’t tell you anything more than the ingredients, so we chose the soft chocolate, mandarin, cocoa nib and almond dish ($18), and waited to see what would emerge. We were rewarded with the most delicate soft chocolate… I’m not sure exactly what to call it – log? cake? mousse? It was just that bit thicker than a mousse, and matched the mix of textures from the mandarin gel, alcoholic mandarin segments, and crisp mandarin shards perched on top. I got much more peanut than almond as the nut flavour – they were scattered whole and crumbed on top. It was an adventurous delight to try all of the elements, and together they matched perfectly. Utterly delicious!
Monster Kitchen and Bar, Hotel Hotel, 25 Edinburgh Avenue, Acton ACT, http://www.hotel-hotel.com.au/eat-and-drink/monster/