Monthly Archives: June 2012

Serious coffee-drinking territory: Coffee Alchemy

Coffee Alchemy is a little café tucked away in the backstreets of Marrickville. Winning the title of “Best Coffee” in the 2011 SMH Good Cafe Guide, Coffee Alchemy is serious coffee-drinking territory. The first thing that you notice about Alchemy is that the mood is sombre. There is no music blaring overhead and there are no waitresses dizzily trotting around. The focus here is on one thing only: coffee.

There are only coffee magazines in this cafe

A group of people twitch nervously outside, having ordered a takeaway, these caffeine addicts are in no mood for patience as they wait to get their first hit of the morning. Inside, the atmosphere is just as stiff, as those who prefer to sip their liquid gold out of porcelain eye off the limited seating as they wait to order their coffee. With only two long benches, customers sit like sardines, tightly pressed next to each other. Awkwardly, customers attempt to take tentative sips, accidently elbowing the person next to them in the process. If you happen to score a seat, don’t plan a long lazy morning of newspaper reading, the unspoken rule is to drink your coffee and then get out. Once your coffee has arrived, all the sterility and hostility instantly dissolves. That first sip makes everything worthwhile. Coffee Alchemy certainly does serve one of the best coffees in town.

Anna Lisle

Coffee Alchemy on Urbanspoon

Read more about Coffee Alchemy here

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A timeless gem, Kingsleys Steak and Crabhouse

In the hospitality industry, where restaurants open and close quicker than you can say “under new management”, consistency is one of the most valuable commodities. Kingsleys Steak and Crabhouse, at Woolloomooloo Wharf, is one of the most reliable restaurants in Sydney. Night after night, meal after meal, Kingsleys delivers impressive food, great service and all in one stunning location.

Sydney’s famous Woolloomooloo Wharf

Don’t be perturbed by the restaurant’s name, Kingsleys is a far cry from your classic two fisted steakhouse. Boasting a formal fine-dining restaurant setting, spread over two levels, the tables on the ground-level wharf are one of the restaurant’s most prized assets. Booked out almost every weekend, a wharf table at Kingsleys gives diners an uninterrupted 180 degree view of the city’s skyline and Sydney Harbour. The perfect destination for impressing tourists and out-of-towners.

Salt and pepper baby octopus

It goes without saying that this meaty mecca certainly gives carnivores a cause for rejoicing, however Kingsleys Steak and Crabhouse impresses equally in the seafood department. An entree of salt and pepper baby octopus is crispy and tender, served with a sweet balsamic glaze that brings the dish together. A ceviche of wild kingfish, offers an interesting textual experience that is offset by crunchy prawns and a housemade mayonnaise. And while Kingsley’s is renowned for its sumptuous serves of QLD chilli mud crab, there was no way I was going past a 400 gram aged rib on the bone. Because, we must remember, rather than being just your average steakhouse, Kingsley’s is, in fact, THE steakhouse. With nothing else on the plate, the aged rib was served as is, without a piece of shrubbery to taint its meaty goodness. Initially questioning how I would get through such a large slab of meat, the aged rib was quietly devoured and all that was left on the plate was a meat-less bone.

Kingsley’s Steak and Crabhouse is a timeless and reliable gem.

Anna Lisle

Kingsleys Steak & Crabhouse on Urbanspoon

Read more about Kingsley’s Steak and Crabhouse here

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Finalists announced for the Electrolux Appetite for Excellence Awards 2012

This week, the finalists for the Electrolux Appetite for Excellence Awards 2012 were announced. The program recognises young hospitality talent from around Australia with three different categories.

Young Chef State Finalists
Adrian Winoto (Demi Chef, Essence Restaurant, Jupiters Casino, Townsville QLD)
Benjamin Wallace (Sous Chef, Longrain, Melbourne VIC)
Jay Lee (Chef de Partie, Mosaic Restaurant, Westin Sydney, Sydney NSW)
Joshua Gertig (Commis Chef, Hilton Adelaide, Adelaide SA)
Kah-wai Lo (Chef de Partie, Hare & Grace, Melbourne VIC)
Matthew Bugeja (Chef de Partie, Becasse, Sydney NSW)
Michael Fox (Head Chef, Henry and the Fox, Melbourne VIC)
Michael Demagistris (Executive Chef, Sorrento Golf Club, Sorrento VIC)
Nick Street-Brown (Head Chef, Coast Restaurant and Bar, Hervey Bay QLD)
Richard Spencer (Junior Sous Chef, Beaufort St Merchant, Highgate WA)
Richmond Rodrigues (Apprentice Chef, Hilton Cairns, Cairns QLD)
Sarah Knights (Sous Chef, Uccello, Sydney NSW)
Stewart Wesson (Head Chef, Culinetic, Adelaide SA)

Electrolux Australian Young Waiter State Finalists
Alexander Tuckett (Asst Restaurant Manager, Pilu at Freshwater, Freshwater NSW)
Christopher Sarandis (Sommelier, The Marquis, Adelaide SA)
Christopher Rose (Sommelier, glass brasserie, Sydney NSW)
Damien Byrne (Sommelier, Grossi Florentino, Melbourne VIC)
Guy Barker (Manager, The European, Melbourne VIC)
James Audas (Head Sommelier, BLACK by Ezard, Pyrmont NSW)
Michael Bascetta (Waiter, Attica, Melbourne VIC)
Nic Wright (Waiters, The Burlington Bar & Dining, Crows Nest NSW)
Pierre-Etienne Geoffroy (Ast. Manager, Jacques Reymond Restaurant, Prahran VIC)
Shaun Eto (Senior Waiter, Icebergs Dining Room, Bondi Beach NSW)
Simone Spicer (Senior Waiter, Pei Modern, Melbourne VIC)

Young Restaurateur State Finalists
Amelia Birch (The Book Kitchen, Surry Hills NSW)
Daniel Wilson (Huxtable Restaurant, Fitzroy VIC)
Justin Markos (Utopia @ Waterfully Gully, Waterfall Gully SA)
Katrina Birchmeier (Garagistes, Hobart TAS)
Peter Harrington (Sage Restaurant, Braddon ACT/NSW)
Rebecca Lines (Bar H, Surry Hills NSW)

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