If you haven’t heard of Smokey O, now’s your time for an education. Smokey O is total Southern-American style BBQ immersion. I admittedly haven’t had BBQ this good in years–and being a Northern boy not so surrounded by Southern BBQ I’m inclined to suggest that this may have been in my top 2-3 BBQ experiences of all time. On a wet Sydney-summer Sunday afternoon around 30 some people huddled around Smokey’s BBQs at Putney Park for a beautiful meat-feast Continue reading
Feenin’ for some ramen? Yeah, me too. This wet weather has me craving for some slurpy noodles and soup to warm my throat. If you’re around the CBD, this little joint just across from Azuma Patisserie off George could hit the spot.
Ton Ton is a takeaway shop with some of the Japanese standards, plus a pretty diverse and homey ramen menu. They had some new editions when I was there: mabo tofu ramen (with spicy minced pork) and spicy nira ramen.
We tried the nira (spicy minced pork & bean paste?) and karaage ramen, with some gyoza on the side.
Ton Ton Ramen
501 George St Ground Floor
Sydney, NSW 2000
02 9267 1313
Jamie Oliver’s new joint should be a destination on the list of anyone in Sydney who likes and/or eats food. I was pretty chuffed to discover that this little restaurant was opening earlier this year, and was pining for a good opportunity in my schedule to go. Although I debated making the trip for my birthday, a sooner occasion came along when The Malaysian, Graceward & I trekked out to Surry Hills & the CBD for some fun on one of those sunny days we’ve managed to get this spring…
It didn’t take long to decide Jamie’s would be dinner.
I had read two or three horror stories about trying to get in to Jamie’s Italian (no bookings for less than 6 people), so we tried to arrive ‘early.’ We got there around 5:30pm, were given a buzzer and told it would be around 45 minutes. With a 150 metre radius for the buzzer, the host told us we were welcome to have drinks in the (crowded) Jamie’s bar, or go somewhere else for drinks and come back.
In all I don’t think we waited more than 20 minutes before our buzzer went alight and vibrating and we headed back to the restaurant, thankful we had picked a bench to wait on rather than sculling drinks upon our unexpectedly early paging!
Jamie’s Italian is very reasonably priced (I was actually shocked when I saw the menu online), nicely decorated and has a trendy vibe. The table waiters were extremely prompt and friendly (we were served by a guy named Jamie!) — happy to explain and making sure our water was always topped up.
I started my night out with a frizzante (sparkling wine) and the waiter offered us a selection of Brasserie bread and olive oil on the house (though, apparently in most cases you need to ask for this. Remember to do so because the bread is fantastic.) Following that we ordered some Crispy Squid with garlicky mayonnaise ($12) as antipasti. The squid was perfectly crisp and the mayo made it completely moreish.
For mains we ordered the Spaghetti Bolognese ($12 half /$19 large), Crab & Squid Ink Risotto ($15.5 half /$26.5 large), and Monachelle Puttanesca ($12 half /$17.5 large). (Mains not pictured due to lighting at our table.)
My favorite was the Puttanesca — “Seashell pasta with a tomato sauce, capers, chilli, anchovies, parsley, black olives & herby breadcrumbs.” The herby breadcrumbs which adorned each serve added an amazing crunch to the pasta dishes, really setting them apart from other italian restaurants I had eaten in.
We also ordered the Humble Green Salad ($6) and Crunchy Salad ($5.5) to share. The Humble Salad, a salad of cos (romaine), mint leaves, buttermilk and parmesan, is delicious, and I’ve already replicated it at home. The crunchy salad, a salad of shaved root vegetables, was great as well but better suited to pair with a meat dish.
Now, I’ve read several blog posts on Jamie’s, and few people seem to be mentioning the desserts. Let me tell you: even if you have eaten elsewhere and all you have room for at Jamie’s is dessert…GO! We ordered The Ultimate Brownie ($8.5) and the Creamy Panna Cotta ($8.5). First of all…where else in Sydney can you get good dessert for $8.5? The brownie was gigantic, gooey on the inside, and is made of chocolate, raspberries and amaretto! The Panna Cotta was so perfectly sweet and flecked with vanilla seeds. Totally the best Panna Cotta I have had.
107 Pitt Street
(02) 8240 9000
What? A ramen post on Everybody Loves Ramen??
Yes, yes you’re probably wondering whether I even love ramen. But the truth is there’s not much good ramen around Parramatta (that I know of…if you got the scoop lemme know), and I don’t make it into the city as much as I would like.
So when the opportunity does show itself, the best place I can think of to eat a steamy bowl of ramen is Gumshara in the Eating World food court in Chinatown.
I won’t dive into to much detail — there are some great posts around.
Gumshara’s menu is pretty straightforward — pick your broth, pick some toppings if you want. Grab your number, then some chopsticks and a spoon from the communal food-court cutlery buckets and wait. Anxiously. For like 3-5 minutes. After your order comes up you can add some condiments, which are complimentary and sitting on the end of the bench. Some toasted sesame seeds and pickled ginger go nicely.
The tonkotsu broth (which you can read about in other posts if you like) is thick with collagen — a product of boiling pork bones and marrow down for hours. Yes, I said hours. It’s slurpy, salty and great for winter. The noodles have a bit of bite to them (perfect) and will fatten in the hot broth if you eat it improperly (meaning if you don’t devour it in less than 10 minutes).
The famous bowl I haven’t tried yet (stupid me) is the special pork spare rib ramen — they apparently make only 10 bowls a day but.
In addition — Gumshara is a cheap eat — around $10-12 a bowl (give or take for extras). If Eating World is busy the place gets swarmed with international Uni students & Japanese hipsters.
Just for lolz — and coz it’s true. Itadakimasssssu!!1!11!!1!!!!1!!
Eating World Harbour Plaza (across from Sydney Entertainment Centre)
Shop 209, 25-29 Dixon Street
Haymarket, NSW 2000
Wow! 95% like it on urbanspoon – dattebayo!