Tag Archives: The Sailors Club

Sydney’s top 10 most delicious dishes

Gone are the days when formal fine dining and degustation menus to match. This year, Sydneysiders are craving an honest meal and a bunch of friends to share it with. We’ve seen the rise of communal share plates, bistro dining and dude food, and it’s been a tasty ride. Read on for our picks of 2012’s most memorable dishes.

1.     Raw wagyu shoulder, grilled enoki mushrooms with fresh horesradish and soft pickled chilli

The Asian-European menu at The Bridge Room is cushioned somewhere between fine dining and bistro and Ross’ version of a modern interpretation of beef carpaccio is its perfect representative.

Ross Lusted, The Bridge Room, Sydney CBD

Raw wagyu shoulder, grilled enoki mushrooms with fresh horesradish and soft pickled chilli

Raw wagyu shoulder and grilled enoki mushrooms

2.     Wood roasted Moran family lamb

My best food memories involve a simple, laid-back meal with friends. The quality of Matt’s wood roasted lamb speaks for itself and I love the concept that everyone just digs in and helps themselves.

Matt Moran, Chiswick, Woollahra

Wood roasted Moran family lamb

Wood roasted Moran family lamb

3.     Split sashimi scampi with chilli, micro leaves and sea salt flakes

If you’re squeamish about oysters, steer clear of this dish. Generous hunks of scampi arrive swimming in extra virgin olive oil and scattered with slices of hot chilli, micro leaves and sea salt flakes. This dish is a textural treat.

Sean Connolly, The Morrison Bar and Oyster Room, Sydney CBD

split sashimi scampi with chilli, micro leaves and sea salt flakes

Split sashimi scampi with chilli, micro leaves and sea salt flakes

 4.     Salad of slow roast pork belly, prawns, pomelo and jellyfish with nuoc mam

China Lane is all about sharing dishes that boast an abundance of fresh, Asian flavours. This dish puts all other salads to shame with its perfectly balanced salty, sweet, sour and bitter flavours.

Ben Haywood, China Lane, Angel Place

Slow roast pork belly, prawns, pomelo and jellyfish with nuoc mam

Slow roast pork belly, prawns, pomelo and jellyfish with nuoc mam

5. Moreton Bay Bug with burnt butter mayo, passion fruit jelly, vegemite croutons

I’m not one to be influenced by the media but there was a reason Chase’s Moreton Bay bug with vegemite croutons made headlines. The texture combinations of this dish –  the sweet jelly, fresh Moreton Bay Bug sashimi, crunchy salty croutons and thick mayo – work in absolute harmony.

Chase Kojima, Sokyo, The Star, Pyrmont

Moreton Bay Bug with burnt butter mayo, passion fruit jelly, vegemite croutons

Moreton Bay Bug with burnt butter mayo, passion fruit jelly, vegemite croutons

6.     Caramelized banana with banoffee mousse, peanut brittle and vanilla ice cream

This dish embodies what I imagine is the Shangri-La philosophy – luxury and decadence. The crunchy shards of peanut brittle and the texture of the banana work harmoniously with the sweet-as-banoffee-pie mousse and vanilla ice cream. If you’re partial to caramel, then this is a must-order.

Steven Krasicki, Altitude Restaurant, Shangri-La

Deconstructed banoffee pie

Deconstructed banoffee pie

7.     Tamarind and molasses glazed Blackmore Wagyu beef brisket, beetroot and horseradish

Sydney dining at its best – sit on the edge of the water, looking straight at the iconic Opera House, and tuck into this rich dish of glazed Wagyu beef brisket. Make sure you come with an appetite.

Andrew McKee, The Dining Room at Park Hyatt Sydney

Tamarind and molasses glazed Blackmore Wagyu beef brisket, beetroot and horseradish

Tamarind and molasses glazed Blackmore Wagyu beef brisket

8.     Seared scallop and ocean trout tartare with amazu ponzu and white truffle oil

Japanese cuisine is renowned for its subtle flavours and this dish is a stunning representation of what happens when Japanese technique is paired with Australian produce.

Adam Lane, The Alibi, Darlinghurst

Seared scallop and ocean trout tartare with amazu ponzu and white truffle oil

Seared scallop and ocean trout tartare with amazu ponzu and white truffle oil

9.     Grilled Yellow Fin Tuna, Beetroot, Witlof & Radish 

A glammed-up version of fish ‘n chips, this grilled yellow fin tuna tastes as though it has jumped straight from the ocean below your feet and onto the plate. Order a bowl of shoestring chips, it is true blue comfort food.

Steven Skelly, The Sailors Club, Rose Bay

Grilled Yellow Fin Tuna, Beetroot, Witlof & Radish

Grilled Yellow Fin Tuna, Beetroot, Witlof & Radish

 10. Petuna ocean trout with shaved radish, celery, endive and citrus emulsion

Perched 47 floors high, at the top of the Harry Seidler designed Australia Square, take a seat at the rotating restaurant, O Bar and Dining. The menu here is simple and healthy but still tasty. Our pick is this colourful ocean trout sashimi with radish.

Michael Moore, O Bar and Dining, Sydney CBD

Petuna ocean trout with shaved radish, celery, endive and citrus emulsion

Petuna ocean trout with shaved radish, celery, endive and citrus emulsion

Anna Lisle

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Moving with the hospitality times, once Pier now The Sailors Club

Michel Roux has done it. Jacques Reymond has done it. Now, Greg Doyle has done it too.

Pier at Rose Bay has been at the forefront of the Sydney fine dining scene since Doyle opened in 1991, holding the highly coveted three chef hat status from 2007-2010. However, it was during 2010 that Doyle controversially handed back his chef hats, explaining “I don’t want the intensity of it any more… … that is, the level of attention to detail it requires, the constant development of new dishes, staffing levels and the cost of maintaining a three-hat restaurant.” (SMH, Sue Bennett, May 18th, 2010). Since this time, Doyle has gradually changed Pier’s focus, cutting main course prices and simplifying the menu. But the biggest change came in August of 2012 where Pier completely shed its fine dining skin and Greg, like Michel Roux and Jacques Reymond, handed over the reins to his daughter Jacqui Lewis.

Canary yellow metal chairs and white picnic-style tables dominate the dining room space

The starch white table cloths were stripped away and the formal table setting was replaced with canary yellow metal chairs and white picnic-style tables. Splashes of bright turquoise feature around the restaurant’s long narrow space and exuberant fabric prints adorn the lounge. Fun, fanciful and a little bit retro, The Sailors Club embodies a 1960s Palm Springs vibe. The only thing missing here are tables of women wearing psychedelic printed mini dresses, with big hair and false eyelashes.

Grilled yellow fin tuna, beetroot, witlof and radish

The food at The Sailors Club is an interesting evolution from Pier’s classic seafood-focused menu. Under Executive Chef Steve Skelly, burgers and minute steaks sit beside dishes like duck confit and oxtail bucatini. A main of grilled yellow fin tuna, beetroot, witlof and radish is elegant in aesthetic and while not a complicated dish, it is exactly what I want. The flathead in Cooper’s batter, with skinny chips and tartare sauce isn’t heavy with oil and is generous in size (there are two huge flathead fillets). Accessible and diverse, with all mains being capped at a more-than-reasonable $30 mark, The Sailors Club is a place where you could happily eat night after night.

A great restaurant moves with the times – adapting, changing and shifting to suit changing hospitality and dining trends. The Doyle family are not afraid of shake things up and their newest incarnation, The Sailors Club, deserves all the success in the world.

Anna Lisle

Read more about The Sailors Club here

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