Sunday, March 27, 2011

La Tratt

Inside Fairfield RSL
14 Anzac Avenue
Fairfield NSW 2165
(02) 9727 5000
Open Wed-Sat 6pm-9:30pm

Fairfield RSL has apparently been super re-vamped over the years, to become one of few stylish RSL clubs, a sports club that is swanky and fancy that doesn't require a long trip out of the area. I have been inside to dine at "Pho" and wasn't very impressed, actually none of our party of 8 liked any of the food.. Pho is best eaten in Cabra at one of the various restaurants that offer pho on their menu.

However, La Tratt really impressed me. The service, the food, and the ambience all exceeded my expectations, and great value for money as well. The prices mentioned below are ala carte, on both the nights i was there it was $49 for bread olives and olive oil dip, entree, main, & dessert. Really cheap in my opinion!

So to start, we were given olive bread, normal bread with olive oil to dip, and a small bowl of olives & garlic. I always try not to eat too much bread but i love my carbs! haha :)

The first time i came here i had the $49 deal, and started off with the tart as my entree. The puff pastry was hot, crispy and soaked with a really tasty sauce from the mushrooms and eschallots. It was nice to have the rocket on top and the fetta on the side, made the dish look very appealing.

Wild mushroom and eschallot tart with rocket and persian feta


Fried zucchini flowers with white polenta, tomato, capers and salsa verde


Polenta cake (not on the menu but it comes with the

Cape Grim Black Angus fillet with confit garlic puree, fried polenta cake, wild mushrooms

and veal demi glaze $34.90)


My dining companion had been warning me about this 'polenta cake' and had had these every single time she's come to La tratt (i think on this occasion it was her 3rd of 4th visit!)

As i mentioned above, the polenta cake only comes with the angus main, but if you ask nicely they can serve it alone for you. At first i thought "really? that good?"

But after a third bite i was hooked, there's something about the buttery and creamy insides that melt in your mouth paired with the crisp and crunchy outer shell. Definitely addictive!

The 2nd visit however, had left us with two slightly browner polenta cakes, i much prefer the lighter colour but they both still tasted pretty darn good.

Twisted pasta with slipper lobster, chilli, tomato and cream


On my second visit i decided to dine ala carte, so i can cover a bit more of the menu rather then have the same dishes again I i had already covered the vegetarian and pesketarian options on the specials menu)

The sauce in this dish i really enjoyed, but it was slightly over salted, but had decent pieces of lobster throughout. Not overly chilli, i would've prefered the sauce to be a bit thicker so that it coated the pasta better.

Lemon marinated spatchcock with sweet corn puree, char-grilled witlof, pine nuts

and sweet wine sauce


Northern territory wild barrimundi fillet with spring bay mussels, herb risotto and saffron sauce

My friend and i both had this seafood dish for our mains, which was delicious! However, we both fell sick that same night right after we got home. Neither of us get sick often, so i rang up the next day to inform them. My message was left, and a few days later the restaurant manager rang me to ask about it.

He was at first a bit defensive, saying that no one else had fallen sick that night and they were really busy as well (how many people actually come forward to admit that they got sick?)

I stood my ground and disagreed, saying that it was definitely something we ate no matter how nice it tasted, we somehow both fell sick and most of our dinner came back up again.

He said he would like us to come back again, and offered us a dining voucher worth $100. This was really generous of him, despite getting sick, and even if i had no voucher, i was still keen to come back and try other things on the menu.

yummy steamed greens

onto dessert ..!

White chocolate pannacotta with poached blueberries, passionfruit jelly, meringue

and mint syrup


Chocolate fondant with apple compote, mascarpone cream and hazelnuts


I really wish i had taken a shot of the fondant insides, really gooey and chocolatey i enjoyed eating this immensely, and ate it really slowly so that the experience would last longer :P

Lemon and mascarpone tart with vanilla cream, citrus and blood orange candy


The tart was nice and tangy, a really great way to finish a meal, & i really liked the crunchy toffee coating.

On my first visit we were offered tea or coffee or biscuits, but on the 2nd visit we weren't. A little bit inconsistent!

All in all, i very much enjoyed both my dining experiences here at La tratt. I recommend coming here, it's really unexpected that a sports club would have something so fancy on the inside, you really do forget that you're in a RSL.

Also don't forget, the special 3 course price is valid Wednesdays and Thursday nights only.

They were featured in Sydney goodweekender as well check it out here :O)

& also featured in SMH here.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Chef's Gallery

Shop 12, Ground Floor Regent Place,
501 George Street, Sydney
Tel: 02 9267 8877
Open 7 days 11am-3pm and 5pm- late

Chef's Gallery, opened in Sydney in August/Sept 2010, and i read a few reviews and heard positive comments about the place, but never remembered to come by whenever i was in the city (and i am rarely in the city).

For my dearest friend Annie's birthday in Mid January of this year she organized a little group of us for lunch at Chef's Gallery, and i was quite impressed!

prawn and pork wontons with handmade noodles
in a Shanghainese style spicy sauce $12.90

This dish was a hit as we ordered two of them! The sauce with these noodles is really addictive, being not too salty & just being so nice that even without the wontons it still would've been yummy!

lightly pan fried prawn dumplings 6 pieces $11.90

These were also good enough for a second round, panfried and glistening golden i think i had more then my fair share of these, and i really enjoyed the long shaped style instead of the traditional round dumplings, more crunch :)

Sliced pork belly with salted fish, dried chilli & dark soya sauce
served with steamed shallot pancakes $21.90

There was a bit of pork left over, the girls said it was too salty, so they struggled to finish it off, i didn't try the pancakes but i imagine it might be nicer with white rice?

prawn and pork wonton in a spicy red soup $9.90

The spice in this soup hit most of us pretty hard - but still yummy and addictive, leaving a hot sensation on our tongues for a lil while after sipping on it.

prawn dumplings steamed in a fine clear pastry 4 pieces $5.90

Unfortunately i found these dumplings not worth the price we paid.

chef's own golden snowflake chicken - lightly crumbed chicken fillet,
very crispy, tender and moist served with noodles in a pumkin soup $13.90

I personally really enjoyed the pumpkin soup noodles, and teamed them with the pan fried prawn dumplings, i finished off most the soup in the end :) The chicken i heard was crispier then it actually looked!

Steamed sesame ‘piggy face’ bun, as sumptuous to the eyes as it is
to the taste buds - a must-try for adults and children (2 pc) $5.90

We were completely stuffed (all this between 5 gals) so we take awayed the piggy buns for dessert later on at Karaoke. They are soo adorable!! I was really looking forward to trying these as i had seen pictures of them floating around the internets, but because they weren't freshly out of the steamer anymore they were a bit rubbery? but the sesame filling was nice - not overly sweet. Must try them on the spot the next time i go :)

I really enjoyed lunch at Chef's Gallery, i'd love to go back and have my favourites again, and possibly try some of the other noodle dishes and desserts!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Chocolate dipped madelines

Sorry everyone for the unannounced hiatus/disappearance off the blogosphere. I've been a little busy bee! I hope to at least punch out a post every week from now on - even though i haven't been blogging i have certainly been eating out still :p

A few thing's that i've been up to are..

Oztag - our team 'TAG TEAM" made it to the grand finals but lost by just TWO points!

& also training for the Oztag Nationals comp in Shell harbour next mth

Mountain biking - training for Capital punishment which is a 50KM mountain bike race in Canberra this weekend where i'll be conquering bike tracks around Mount Stromlo, Kowen forest, Madjura Pines & Black mountain (exciting!)

Guitar hero-ing - i love it!


Exploring local eats

I ate my way through Cabramtta tours (more info here)

Here is something I baked a while ago but never got around to blogging it.. & i've only used my madeleine pan once since then!

Chocolate Madeleines Recipe

(Adapted from Donna Hay Chocolate)

Makes 12


2 eggs

1/3 cup (75g / 2 1/2 oz) caster (superfine) sugar

1/3 cup (50 g / 1 3/4 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour

1 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp cocoa powder

60 g (2 oz) butter, melted


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (350F).
  2. Place the eggs and sugar in a bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa over the egg mixture and fold through with the melted butter.
  4. Spoon the mixture into greased large Madeleine tins until two-thirds full.
5. Bake for 10 minutes or until the Madeleine's are set.

I dipped mine in chocolate to keep them moist as madeleines dry out quickly and are meant to be eaten on the same day that they are made!

Also i refrigerated the batter for two nights, as I read it helps to create that 'hump'.

Happy baking!