As happy as you may be to finally go back to work on a Monday, you may want to visit Ormeggio at The Spit on a Sunday. Just because you have a free afternoon doesn’t mean you should spend it at home. Since opening in 2009, Ormeggio has gained themselves Two Chef Hats in the Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide 2015 and it’s about time I visit this mystical land that they call “Stressless Sunday Dinner” in one of Mosman bay. It’s natural to hype up what you think $69 for 5 courses will be like in your imagination, but know that it’s probably the most cheapest meal I’ve been at by a hatted Italian restaurant. Think more “Great Gatsby” entrance when every dish arrives at your table.
What a view!
To find oneself in a never-ending plight to live healthfully, this organic sourdough with homemade whipped ricotta is an excellent place to start. Applause for meeting all the Nessy Eater requirements as it was served very warm, which lured me to really enjoy the aroma of this freshly baked bread. The crust was my absolute favourite as it offered a mixture of textures of being crusty and at the same time chewy. As for the wholesome inside, expect it to be between fluffy and spongy. Very lucky this bread didn’t turn into a wheat-brick. And what about that whipped ricotta eh? It was the simplicity and creaminess that surprised me! I almost begged the waiter for another round of this creamy spread.
Organic warm sour dough
This is no doubt green light dish or should I say a fantastic ocean trout appetiser with daikon, squid ink, mussels mayonnaise and dill. This is just one incredible presentation that I couldn’t believe I was about to devour. There was a lot of chopped omega 3 goodness in this and a lovely powerful dimples of sauce’s to create additional flavours. To stir the textures up the crunchiness of the dill brought a comfortable finish.
Yeah that was my ride on the left…KIDDING!
If you aren’t the kind of bid kid who takes joy in mixing the perfect martini then Pavoni martini ($22) is the one for you my friends. Something a little different and unexpected was this cocktail provides a bowl of olives, YES A BOWL OF OLIVES! This totally deserves an award for cocktail presentation.
Pavoni Martini ($22)
Make sure you make stomach room for the strawberry mojito ($11)-it’s a non alcoholic mocktail glory. The sweet, juicy crushed strawberries are a perfect compliment to the lime and mint. It’s a great beverage when you’re in the mood for something fruity and what better way to beat the heat during summer.
Strawberry Mojito ($11)
The tagliolini has got to come in a BIGGER size than a spoonful. I think I just confessed this dish was just super small for me. The pasta was fantastico-it provided the perfectly cooked strings of tagliolini that covered in a decadent mascarpone sauce and dusted with bottarga di pilu with a hint of lemon. The pasta was a perfect cradle for the sauce and a dusting of the bottarga (fish roe) really makes this dish sing. Fingers crossed next time I visit Ormeggio they offer upsizing this dish. I’ve put a lot of love eating this pasta and I wouldn’t mind doing it again for the second time.
By now I was ready for bed but that didn’t stop me from eating the braised lamb which I like to add it was truly gorgeous in presentation, especially with the river of yogurt, tomato that looked like watermelon pieces, coriander and garam masala. The lamb easily produced a flavoursome and tender outcome, however there was a slightly extra flavour and smell of game, which kind of ruined it for me.
Braised lamb shoulder
The greatest thing about pre-desserts is that you know there is another dessert coming up. Don’t be ashamed; take advantage of the opportunity of having two desserts! It’s an invitation to pamper yourself. Textures of passion fruit with coconut was all fun and games as it provided that sweet, smooth yet crunchy taste. Thumbs up for that palate-cleansing dish!
Behold! Ormeggio’s signature dessert landed at our table and I can’t quite put my finger on how many carrots were used in the making of this dish. It is one of the all-time favourites, and for good reason. The carrot cake is between spongy and moist, but not mushy if that’s what you are thinking. The cake softens more when it’s dunked into the fennel ice-cream and with the farro it adds that extra kick to the dessert. What was intriguing about this dessert was the dollops of vinegar caramel. I know it sounds insane to have vinegar in your dessert, but it strangely blends well with the sweet caramel and provides a little zing feeling.
Contemporary Italian cuisine is something I haven’t experienced before and I can finally tick that off, thanks to Ormeggio. I was certainly impressed with not only their food but hospitality as well. Staff knew what they were doing and was very knowledgeable with the menu and even the wine list. For a two hatted restaurant that offers an insane valuable dinner at $69 per person for 5 course meal with an ocean view, I think you’d be stressed not to visit on a Sunday.
Photos by Vanny Tang
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Don’t feel guilty about going straight to the bar and ordering endless amounts of cocktail, tapas and dessert at Onyx Lounge, near Newtown Station. This romantic bar specialises in adults only drinks and has over 120 cocktails you can choose from, from their menu. Yes, this bar allows you to create your own mini tapas party for the evening with the choice of share plates, mains, pizza and burgers. Seconds from Cuckoo Callay, this newish bar is surprisingly gorgeous and hidden upstairs. Keep an eye out for the Onyx sign on King Street, Newtown.
You can easily spot Onyx with this sign.
Speechless when I first walked in.
Deciding what to eat at Onyx.
I love the look of the swanky Fairyfloss cocktail ($16.90). This beverage is without doubt a girly drink because it’s so hard to hide behind the curtains with the contagious colour of pink. A large pile of fairyfloss was swimming in vodka and strawberry coulis.
Fairyfloss cocktail ($16.90)
If no one orders this Blue Galactic cocktail ($16.90) then you need to move to another galaxy. The idea of bringing vodka, blue curacao, lemon, and berry coulis is brilliant. It is possible to believe we didn’t order another one because it was the most desirable cocktail for the evening.
Blue Galactic cocktail ($16.90)
We cheated a little with the Quesadilla Chicken ($14), conning our way by chucking a few slices of chorizo. However the marinated chicken strips, mozzarella cheese on a flour tortilla served with avocado dipping sauce seriously knows how to knock your face with burst of flavours.
Quesadilla Chicken ($14)
Remember to look carefully at the Chorizo and Potato ($14) as it was a bit of a roller-coaster of flavour and fun with Spanish pork chorizo slices, chat potato chunks in an oven roasted roma tomato and smokey chipotle chilli jam. I found the chorizo to be very tasty as it literally brings the heat to this dish. I was challenged to go fire walking with the tomato and chipotle chilli jam.
Chorizo and Potato ($14)
It is compulsory to order the Deep Fried Tasmanian Heritage Brie ($10). The cranberry sauce brings the best out of the fried brie. It’s kind of like a stepping stone of new flavours. This dish brought a confident smile out of me. Under enormous pressure from Almighty Princess, I ordered another one of these because our hearts couldn’t stop melting for these.
Deep Fried Tasmanian Heritage Brie ($10)
You know how to make my heart melt fried brie ❤
Discover the Spicy Italian Meatballs ($16) as you attempt to give your tastebuds some character. There is no way you won’t connect with these meatballs because every bite full contains that extra heat to your body. The texture is faultless with a bouncy chewiness centre with the splash of the homemade tomato sauce and shaved parmesan atop, it lets your tongue enter a whole new world. If you’re craving for some spice, better feed your intestines with this bowl of meatballs.
Spicy Italian Meatballs ($16)
Back in the day I remember that fairy god mothers would sprinkle rainbows on my toast but when you’re 18+ the 100 & 1000s cocktail ($16.90) is the new way of seeing rainbows and butterflies. This cocktail contained vodka, triple sec, lime juice and cranberry juice. It goes down sweet with the extra colours.
100 & 1000s cocktail ($16.90)
Almighty Princess and I were set to order desserts, so it occurred to me that the Pistachio Ice-Cream ($10) appeared to look classic on their menu, so what we did best is order it. However, something about the presentation didn’t seem right. I felt like it didn’t have its own identity and it was chilling to see it look like this. But the scoop and half ice-cream had flavours of pistachio, fig & honey and buried undernealth berry coulis with fresh crushed pistachio nuts which made me ask for more.
Pistachio Ice-Cream ($10)
It’s hard not to love the Flaming Chocolate Tarte ($10) on a Friday night, especially if your dessert gives you a front-row seat to see it go on FIRE. Which mine did. I’m a sucker for the quirky tricks and creative spirit when a restaurant offers this kind of ingredient.
Flaming Chocolate Tarte ($10)
This chocolate tarte is a really decadent and it’s so entertaining to witness my dessert in flames. The tart filling is an absolute delight and will make your your mouth water with semi-sweet chocolate, and sweet pastry. Add a spoonful of vanilla ice-cream to lighten the rich texture, but create a creamy flavour.
Never thought I’d be happy that my dessert would go up in flames.
There’s an array of flavours and textures in Onyx’s menu. For me though, the soul of the menu is in the cocktails and nibbles. From the minute I walked upstairs and noticed the fairy lights, my heart instantly skipped a beat. I naturally started thinking this place is a hot spot in every sense for Newtown with chilled, classy interior and cosy seats. Onyx Restaurant & Cocktail Bar is great for after work drinks and can easily turn it into a romantic date.
Photos by Vanny Tang
Disclaimer: Nessy Eater attended as a guest with $100 voucher, thanks to Onyx Restaurant & Cocktail Bar.
Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.
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Fancy baking in a bakery? How about an evening making a loaf of gluten-free bread and shortcrust pastry? At Brasserie Bread, they have come up with one of the best gluten-free slumber baking party ideas ever. It’s a rare chance to spend 3 hours with an artisan baker and learn the technical skills from starter to finish. For ($160 per person) max 10 students per course, this intimate workshop allows you go create and bake an amazing gluten-free bread loaf, a foccacia-style cornbread and a smoked trout & goats cheese tart with natural ingredient. In 2013 the Brasserie Bread has won sourdough loaf and Gold Medal at the RAS Sydney Fine Food Show Awards and in 2014 winner of champion sourdough & organic bread at sydney royal fine food show. The bakery is always occupied with a variety of hot fresh baked breads and pastries. For those who like to attempt making gluten-free bread, Brasserie Bread offer evening classes. You wouldn’t want to miss out breaducation, if you happen to like bread.
Gluten-Free Baking Workshop at Banksmeadow Bakery.
At 1:30pm sharp, the breaducation door was wide open and whilst we wait for other guests to arrive, I go do my Nessy thang. Wandering around with my camera and trying snoop around and see how a bakery looks like. This crazy large kitchen has a lot of personality and I am talking about GIGANTIC mixer and LARGE oven, it’s a dream baking kitchen alright. We were almost ready to begin, but it was nice of Artisan Baker Jo to let us introduce ourselves. Just a few centimeters to my left, I happen to be standing next to Go Bake Yourself! Urvashi is incredibly an awesome baker and you’d want her to bake you something everyday! Also standing next to Urvashi, Grab Your Fork’s cousin, Yvonne happens to be in the house. What a small world! This woman is seriously a baking enthusiast as she mentioned this would be her second class. SUPER KEEN BEAN!
Baking 3 Hours of gluten-free bread is fun for everyone.
Enough of me waffling and we start off with our starter ingredients to make Gluten-Free Bread Loaf. This includes organic gluten free flour, organic buckwheat flour, organic besan flour, river salt, raw sugar, fresh yeast, extra virgin olive oil, milk, water, xanthan gum and biga. Jo mentions that in the gluten free flour, there is a mixture of organic gluten free flour, 75% organic brown rice flour, 12.5% millet, 12.5% buckwheat. Top secret tip: For every 500grams of this mix, add 1tablespoon of gelatine, so this let’s the bread mingle well together. With the mix of these organic flours and gelatine it helps create a better tastier characteristics, especially the tendency of the bread is quite strong. For the gluten free enthusiast, Jo recommends Eating Gluten Free and Bette Hagman’s recipes. After Jo introduces us to gluten-free ingredients and our schedule, we hop to it with our mixing. We blended our fresh yeast, raw sugar, salt to our cup of milk, then poured it straight into our bowl and mixed thoroughly together till it looks sticky.
This is not so hard! Gluten-Free Bread Loaf here I come.
Next, we add water and oil, then continue mixing thoroughly till you get a nice mushy texture.
Adding 40ml of extra virgin oil plus 80ml of water into the mixing bowl.
After a nice arm workout with mixing, add 200 grams of biga into the mixing bowl. Did you know? Biga is a natural fermenting dough that is used to create a breads characteristics of flavour.
That’s 200 grams of Biga.
Mixing all ingredients together.
Well that’s a wrap for Gluten Free Bread Loaf. Just kidding! We had no choice to say farewell to these babies for about an hour so they can bulk ferment in a warm place. We all had to make sure our bowls were covered in clean wrap, so no flavours dissolve out in open.
Placing these Gluten-Free Bread Loaf mixture into the refrigerate room before baking.
Eagerly waiting for a next activity, Jo introduces us to Lupin. Lupin is a fantastic ingredient as it contains LOW GI and HIGH in PROTEIN (up to 40%) and great health benefit for those participating high content of dietary fibre. It is made from dehulled leguminous lupin kernels, not maize. From an Artisan Baker’s perspective, Jo suggest Kialla Pure is an excellent choice to making gluten free products, however if you don’t have that then use whatever that best fits you.
Jo talks about the ingredients we were using.
For making our Gluten Free Focaccia, it was exactly the same steps to making Gluten Free Bread Loaf. However slight difference with ingredients: organic gluten free flour, river salt, raw sugar, fresh yeast, organic Lupin flour, extra virgin olive oil, milk, water, xanthan gum and biga. After combining all ingredients together, cover it with clean wrap and store in a warm place. During the waiting process, six lucky guests including myself got the opportunity to go behind the scene and witness Brasserie Bread baking world. Unfortunately we weren’t allowed to take photos, but let me point this out, it was FREAKEN INCREDIBLE EXPERIENCE! It felt like Willy Wonka Wonderland, except this one’s for the bread fanatics. We stopped at the croissant pastry room and endless trays of croissants were waiting to be baked. We even witnessed bakers who had no gloves on taking out hot crisp sourdough bread straight out of the oven. That’s unbelievably insane!
Excitingly waiting to place the mixture into that tiny tray.
I know! Time flies and our Gluten Free Bread Loaf mixture was ready. I am going to make sure this bread is going to look attractive to eat. But first, let me out scoop 250 grams of Gluten- Free Bread Loaf mixture to take home and test it out in my own oven.
We were allowed to take home 250g Gluten-Free Bread Loaf mixture.
Jo suggests we should sprinkle nothing but sesame seeds to add that additional flavour to our loaf of bread. Hmmmmmm I can smell it already!
Get ready to get baked Gluten-Free Bread Loaf.
Can’t wait to see how these bad boys will turn out.
Once these adorable tins are in the oven, get your hands dirty cause it’s time for Gluten Free Shortcrust Pastry. Each guest gets one piece of already made mixture that has been refrigerated for at least 1 hour before ready to use.
Excited to make Gluten-Free Shortcrust Pastry.
Closely listening and examining Jo’s method of placing the shortcrust onto the tin seemed super easy, but when I done it, it was a bit of a struggle. Luckily, a great tip Jo mentioned is use your roller to evenly shape the edges of the crust. Once you have enough confidence with the mold of your crust, add baking beans to hold the shape before place it in the oven.
Baking beans are used to get the shortcrust pastry to hold their shape before putting it in the oven.
Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees, then push the tarts into the oven for 10 minutes until slightly golden brown. My tart almost looks golden brown, but don’t forget I need to add a few things then back in the oven again.
Hey! My gluten-free shortcrust pastry turned out not so bad for a first timer.
Jo offered us smoked trout, goats cheese, caramelised onion, ricotta and pesto to fill up a lovely tarts. Once all guests were finished showing-off their presentation talents, tarts went straight back in the oven again for about 10 minutes.
The best part about making gluten-free tart is filling it with smoked trout, goats cheese, caramelised onion and pesto.
What do you think? The crust was perfectly baked and texture was very nice and crumbly with a hint of buttery flavour.
TA DA! My work of art 😀
Fruit flavour refreshments : Frou Frou Cordials is a must try! Taste very fancy without any preservaties, colouring or artificial flavours.
Back to the bakery lab and our Gluten Free Focaccia is ready for us to mold. Before that Jo gives us some helpful hints to create the perfect flavours to our focaccia and that’s adding extra virgin olive oil. Once we’ve completed shaping our Focaccia, it’s ready to get baked!
Allow the mixture to ‘bulk fermet‘ for at least 1 hour in a warm place.
Jo demonstrating how to decorate the gluten-free focaccia.
Time to top the Gluten-Free Focaccia with desired ingredients.
Can’t believe I made my own Gluten Free Bread Loaf!!! I like I am one step closer to becoming the perfect future housewife 😛
Our Gluten-Free Bread Loaf is ready!
Ok ok, I confess and Urvashi can be my witness that most of the time I was the kid in this class. Everyone elses Gluten Free Focaccia turned out to be a normal, except mine and Urvashi. Haha! You see Urvashi focaccia and my Franklinstein focaccia got married in the baking room. They were baking it out for 15 minutes in the oven and they look perfectly happy with a nice golden crisp tan face. They make an excellent couple because they both have wonderful red sun dried tomatoes and sprinkles of rosemary smile and oh, can’t forget dusted cheddar cheese to add that extra personality.
Haha! Urvashi and I may of decorated our Gluten-Free Focaccia in a different manner.
Before we left, it was my duty to go for a BREAD-ING SPREE with Yvonne and Urvashi. Can you imagine how much bread and danishes one can take home and eat? Brasserie Bread have an enormous supply of bread, cake and pastries. It honestly didn’t take us long to decide what bread to take home because everything smelt so delicious, my body was ready for it.
WOW! Is this bread heaven or what?! ❤ ❤ ❤
Ready to eat Olive & Rosemary Loaf
Love to whack someone in the head with the Rustic Loaf. KIDDING! Or am I ? 😛
All the French Pastry one could ever ask for!
This is where beautiful breads and pastries are made.
I only have one sentence to sum up my BREAD-ING SPREE feelings. DAMMMMMN GIRL!!!! Mama’s bringing home the bread. 😛 I apologise to you readers in advance that your eyes will have to witness a few disturbing photos and maybe some side effects include craving for bread and pastries.
Just doing my BREAD SPREE with Urvashi at Brasserie Bread Bakery store. No biggie!
Let me introduce you to some unique breads that Brasserie Bread has to offer!!! You won’t be bored from this bakery. Behold! Organic Sourdough – Large Bakers Round that’s the size of my face and BIGGER.
French Mountain Bread – Large Bakers Round-It’s TWO TIMES BIGGER than my FACE.
Granary Toast Loaf packed with variety of 6 grains.
The Kalamata Olives & Fresh Rosemary Boule ($7.50) is great with soup.
Walnut & Fig Loaf ($7.50) contains chock-full of walnuts and dried figs and is the ultimate fruit sourdough.
Ready to take on the world with my my French Mountain shield and Rustic sword.
(Excuse my messy Nessy hair, I just came back from a battle).
I am not ashamed of myself for not being that typical girl who enjoys shopping spree at a shopping center ( don’t get me wrong, I love that too), but I rather get some carbs in my system and go all bread-ing bad at the bakery.Teehee.
Nessy Eater girl clearly brings home the bread. Haha!
Photos by Vanny Tang
Opinions are however, Nessy Eater’s own.
Like to know more about Nessy Eater food adventures?