Tonight's dinner is with two of my girl friends, one of which told me she needed a lift in her spirit, and the other is blessed with a baby that is craving for pastas. I think I know where to go...
Hidden on level two of The Strand Arcade is a gloomy but tasteful dining room with exposed brick and walls lined with olive oil and wines. The space is so dim that the waiters bring a mushroom lamp to the table along with the menu. We happily snacked on the complementary bread – a selection of walnut rye, olive ciabatta and white sourdough left at our table. We had fun dipping the bread into one of the three olive oils on our table: "Sanguinella" blood orange, "Limone" lemon and "Fruttato” traditional early harvest Tuscan and Umbrian oils.
On their menu are a range of pastas made on the premises in a dedicated pasta kitchen with all pastas made from flour and organic eggs. Tonight from the pasta dishes we ordered Chitarra Spaghetti with barramundi and wild prawns and Sage Leaf Lasagne with pumpkin and ricotta. Both had textures unique to freshly made pastas. The sage leaf lasagne is unlike any lasagne I’ve seen before. It’s a thin slice but the flavour is so opulent and sweet that the portion is precisely what’s required for complete contentment. The chitarra spaghetti which I did not try, is commended for its intense seafood flavour, although slightly on the salty side.
Having tasted their pastas before, I wanted to try one of their meat dishes. The waiter highly recommended the ten hour slow cooked beef oyster blade, and I ordered this after tossing between this and the roast duck leg. It turns out to be a win. The beef oyster blade is irresistibly succulent. The flavour is extremely intense as the collagen melts during the braising of the meat. The parsnip puree is blood-clotting rich and the sour cherries are slightly acidic and sweet. All and all it is a dish to adore.
With the generous portions and with myself trying to come off a cold, we reluctantly skipped desserts, which I know to be delicious, especially the housemade sorbets. Always a next time :)
|Complimentary bread basket with walnut rye, |
olive ciabatta and white sourdough
|Olive oil to dip the bread into|
|SPAGHETTI CHITARRA CON PESCE D’ACQUADOLCE |
Freshly Made Chitarra Spaghetti with Barramundi,
Wild Prawns, Chilli, Capers, Garlic and Pinot Grigio White Wine
|L Loves... LASAGNE DI ZUCCA |
Sage Leaf Lasagne with Pumpkin, Ricotta, Pistachio Nuts and Amaretti
|L Loves... BRASATO DI MANZO ALLE AMARENE |
Ten Hour Slow Cooked British Breed Beef, Parsnip Puree,
Grilled Green Shallots, Pearl Garlic, Amarena Sour Cherry Sauce
• Taste: 8.5/10
• Ambience: 3.5/5
• Value: 3/5
• Service: 4/5
• Creativity and other WOW factors: 3/5
Overall rating: 22/30
Shop 100, Level 2, The Strand Arcade
412-414 George St
Sydney NSW 2000
Ph: (02) 9231 6117
Lunch Mon-Sat 12pm-3pm
Dinner Mon-Sat 6pm-late
Public Holidays - closed
Visited August 2013
Friendly advice: Try at least one of their pastas, freshly made pastas are just amazing!