After an initial cancellation hiccup due to the weather, the Taste of Sydney 2012 Festival has finally kicked things off.
For those of you planning to head off to the festival over the weekend (weather permitting) or those just curious to see what you’re potentially missing, read on to see some of the mouth-watering dishes on offer, as well as some opinions and recommendations.
Rekorderlig Cider (6 Crowns) – Available in Apple & Blackcurrant, Wild Berries, Winter Cider (Apple, Cinnamon & Vanilla), Apple, Pear & Strawberry & Lime.
It’s refreshing and pretty decent value for the money as the cups are sizable (about the size of a schooner).
Quarter Twenty One: Fried Hawkesbury School Prawns, Prosciutto and Rouille (12 Crowns) – Pretty good but very stabby on the soft tissue inside the mouth. Eat with care.
The Montpellier Public House: Crisp Brisket of Pasture Fed Beef with Wild Mushrooms (10 Crowns) – A variation on the Crisp Wagyu Beef with Mushroom & Truffle Foam from the previous years. Decent but size of beef fingers can vary. The ones in the photo were a bit stingy compared to some others seen.
Charlie & Co. Diner: The Burger (10 Crowns) – Wagyu beef and cheese slider served with a side of chips. Can’t comment on slider but chips were really crisp.
Charlie & Co. Diner: The Dog (8 Crowns) – Miniature artisan frankfurter chili dog served with chips. Same comment as previous.
Four in Hand: Roast Suckling Pig, Coleslaw, Onion Rings and Hot Sauce (12 Crowns) – A very far cry from the Taste of Sydney progressive degustation preview dinner at Four in Hand. Pork is nice & tender but no sign of any crackling! Coleslaw was rather salty but onion ring was pretty nice. Ok meal as it is but very disappointed from elevated expectations.
The Montpellier Public House: Braised Shoulder of Lamb with Polenta & Green Sauce (12 Crowns) – Lamb is very moist and tender, practically comes apart on its own. The dish is very greasy when eaten as it’s served. Would have probably liked the dish more had I just poured off the oil.
Quarter Twenty One: Slow Cooked and Caramelised Short Rib with Bone Marrow Persillade (12 Crowns) – Unanimously considered the best dish with the people I was dining with. The short rib is just as tender as the previous lamb dish but an overall smaller serve by volume.
Four in Hand [ICON]: Pigs Tail with Corn and Crab Salad with Lobster Bisque (20 Crowns) – One of the special, limited number and pricier ICON dishes. Pig’s tail was tender with a gelatinous skin and crab salad tasted great. However, generally didn’t feel the additional value for money when compared to stand-out dishes like Quarter Twenty One’s Short Rib.
Efendy: Pistachio Dessert Trio of Traditional Baklava, Dolma and Kadayif (8 Crowns) – Clockwise from the top-right, the baklava, dolma and kadayif were all great. Each pastry was crispy and sweet, with a nice balance of the sweet syrup and butter; neither element either overbearing or lacking. It was a good dessert for the price.
That’s it with the photo menu. While they hand out booklets onsite with a layout map as well as every restaurant’s dishes, if you want to do a bit of forward research, you can view/download the official Taste of Sydney 2012 menu.
Finally, if you’re man enough for the challenge, try out Pat & Stick’s Hot Chocolate ice-cream sandwich – “A special for Taste! Belgian chocolate ice cream with spicy habanero chillis fresh from Pat’s garden”. I normally love chili but this was a bit much for me.
Hope you enjoy the festival!