Monday, May 7, 2012

Chiswick, Woollahra

Well hello there! Pardon my extended absence from this little corner of the internet (again) but rest assured all is well and we can save the stories for another time. Now that the nights are getting colder we empty fridgers are at our element - finding the comfort food that makes you want to hug the person next to you.
Together with our friends Mr&Mrs Macaroni - this evening's double date took us to the leafy suburb of Woollahra to check out Matt Moran and Peter Sullivan's newest Sydney establishment - Chiswick. Unlike most of our spontaneous adventures here, we actually booked a few weeks in advance. It truly is a popular new addition as we had a 3 week wait to secure a 6pm booking on a Wednesday night! But thankfully there was great wine ahead of us in this French-provinical garden style restaurant. With wall length windows looking straight out into the manicured gardens - the scene was set for a very homely and cozy atmosphere sans the feminine vibe.
There were 6 sections of the menu and it was wonderful to see unpretentious and simple dishes on offer. Listed were a selection of nibbles and small plates as well as mains which were all under $39 with share plates under $60. Our waitress advised us that servings were quite generous so we devised a plan to tackle as many dishes as possible. 
Our Small Plates: Steak Tartare $18 and Pulled veal ravioli with soybeans $20
The ravioli was interesting as one would automatically assume that it would be coated in a thick pasta sugo - not in this case. The little parcels of veal were tossed with beans, capers and a light shiso flavour making it very fresh and tangy. Absolutely unexpected but all the more wonderful.
My friend Mrs Macaroni told me that she judges restaurants by the taste of their chips and we were both in our element when the side of Hand Cut chips came out. The black garlic aioli is the stuff my dreams are made out of - no word of a lie here, the creamy garlic goodness nearly led me to the open kitchen where I could steal a bottle. 
Hand cut chips $9 and Shared Dish - Fish and Prawn Pie $58

Thursday, March 1, 2012

March in to Merivale - American Diner at Mad Cow, CBD

Pinch and a Punch for the first day of the Month! And for my fellow Sydney friends, its that time of the year again - March into Merivale! A couple of hooligans couldn't say no to the promise of a bonafide American Diner experience. Star Spangled banners decorated the Mad Cow steakhouse, with (albiet empty) Ketchup and Mustard squeeze bottles - get into the USA spirit!
As I nursed my non-american beer it was clear that these events in each of Merivale's restaurants really pull in the crowds. On an ordinary tuesday night, the entire dining area of Mad Cow was packed out. This $70 event featuring 5 courses which would "showcase and celebrate American diner classics" were one of the events in the program that  had sold out.
Our overly hyperactive and enthusiastic table agree that head chef Christopher Whitehead had a tough crowd specifically in this table alone - with 2 of the diners including myself having fond childhood memories in the US of A and another co-eater back from a long stint of travelling through the country.
It took a while to get the meal started but I suppose such is the case when you are feeding the whole restaurant identical courses. For our amuse(ment), a corn and cheese quesadilla. We figured this was a taste of America in close proximity to the Mexican border.
Our First Entree was a chopped salad with prawns, avocado, cucumber, tomato and onions. A very light and fresh shrimp salad. California-inspired perhaps? I think a side of ranch would have made this dish a bit more American perhaps. I figured that if the American flag was featured in my photo's it would validate the dinner theme.
 Our second entree was a perfectly cooked Salmon filet with crushed peas. Cooked to perfection with a rare middle and crunchy skin, we marked Alaska off the map of the USA - they catch salmon there right?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tio's Cerveceria, Surry Hills

Im going to start this post with a blurry photo of the bar because I wouldn't be the empty fridger you have grown to love had I been able to hold my camera straight at Tio's - a fun new establishment dedicated to a liquor close to my heart.
Instead of the usual tea and scones Myself; Demos and our ever reliable honorary fridgemagnet The Gooseman found ourselves at Tio's for a casual and lighthearted tequila throwdown. Well casual and lighthearted was the idea but then when we found ourselves at a tequila bar, all bets were off. This was not a time to do things in halves.
I might start of listing beverages in order of alcohol content. Candidate number one is little miss mexico - the little Coronita. The opportunity was not missed to showcase its teeny tiny size next to Demos' face.
As this was on a Sunday afternoon, the bar wasn't at all packed and we had the attention of the tequilla experts behind the counter. Not that I counted but apparently there are over 70 different types of tequilla on the bar shrine. Now where to start?

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Baffi and Mo, Redfern

I could end this post right now after that photo right?
Here at The Empty Fridge, you should really believe that we don't do things in halves, especially with breakfast. We really do mean business when it comes to the morning meal - or noon depending on the prior evenings' shennanigans.
Demos, Myself and this post's honorary fridgemagnet - the Safa were in serious recovery mode one morning and  in search for a breakfast that would repair us. We found ourselves at Baffi and Mo, a cafe in Redfern renowned for kickstarting the broken with their hearty breakfast offerings. Below is how we roll..

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Buffalo Dining Club, Darlinghurst

If "All I have in the world is my Mozzarella and my Word" then after promising to "write a post tonight" for so long, all I am left with now is just my Mozzarella and there will be cheese aplenty in this post! The faithful trio of myself; Demos and the Gooseman wound up finding ourselves at Buffalo Dining Club, another new addition to the Darlinghurst precinct off the main drag of Victoria Rd
Buffallo Dining Club is a two storey super casual eatery. It's  fun and rowdy, just the way we like it. It was a busy saturday night and although they don't take any bookings we missed the first wave of diners. There are no menus, only a chalkboard and a very reasonably priced wine list. A great bottle of Santa Cristina Sangiovese ($42) was the pick of the bunch and was one of the several bottles listed that was under $50. 
Now for the food. With a name like Buffalo Dining Club, I know I was picturing another new eatery riding the american food wave and serving buffalo hot wings with cowboy hats. No friends; the buffalo in question here is buffalo mozzarella and LOTS of it. Lactose Intolerants need not apply. No seriously, just don't. 
Starting the proceedings was a serving of Burrata, with a side of potato croquettes and chilli brocollini. $15 gets you 125 grams of Burrata (or 100 grams of fresh buffalo mozzarella) and a selection of two sides from the chalkboard menu. Aside from the two we selected they offered other dishes such as balsamic baby carrots, portobello mushrooms, honey roasted fennel almonds and so on and so forth. What about the meat? 


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