Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Chiswick, Woollahra

Birthdays, they come around once a year don’t they? As a child I remember being excited about my upcoming birthday and how special it would be. As a teen, birthdays seem to last over a week rather than just a day. And now after the age of 25, I wish it would pass by unseen or unheard of. Just another day …

“How does the last day of being 26 feel?” Miss CC asked.
I had completely forgotten and with a pause, “Tomorrow, I will wake with wrinkles, grey hair and perhaps even a walking stick!”

So, how does 27 feel? The same. So, I’d like to declare that I am 25 every year. Thank you.

My friends celebrated Miss ES and my birthday a month ahead of time, it was early February when we visited Chiswick. The lovely greenery out front made us all want to bask in that Summer day.

Hummus, zucchini, garden mint
Having a party of 10, we were advised the $80 set menu was required. We start with the hummus with chickpeas.

Oregano garlic, wood fired bread

Heirloom carrots, macadamia, cumin, tarragon

The garden vegetables were fresh, but that delicious sauce won us all over as we directed our garlic flat bread away from the hummus and nearly wiped the plate clean.

Crispy fried quail, lime, shallot, ginger

But I’ll let you in on the secret that really got the table quiet, the deep fried quail. It was crispy in all ways and the smeared sauce around the bowl helped boost the flavours from the quail bringing a tangy, yet sweet touch. I fell in love. Tip: when you take the last piece of quail, be sure to dollop on as much sauce as you can, as the service is so quick that they take your empty dish away before you register.

Kingfish, yuzu, cucumber

Everyone around the table seemed to have found a bitter taste when they had their kingfish. I on the other hand loved how the cucumber offered a fresh touch to the kingfish. Perhaps there was something in the dish that had a bitter taste, and I was just lucky enough to not get it.

Garden radish, Hawkesbury goats curd, nasturtium

I’m not a fan of goats cheese, as it is way too strong for me. However, even the goat cheese lovers on the table found this a little strange and did not seem to enjoy the texture of the goats curd. The unpopular and unloved dish was right here.

CHISWICK marinara, tomato, prawns, clams, fregola

Please, give me some bread to help soak up this amazing CHISWICK marinara sauce! The tomato-based sauce was so moreish, I felt like drinking it as if it was a soup. The fish fell apart at the touch of my fork, and all the other seafoods were just as fresh, bursting with the flavours from the amazing sauce.

Whole roast chicken, garlic, cos lettuce, pan juices

The chicken, was good but not outstanding. Perhaps I had indulged on the marinara a bit too much. The chicken was still juicy, but there was no real wow-factor to it.

Wood roasted Moran family lamb, eggplant, tomatoes

The infamous Matt Moran lamb! Tender pieces of lamb dosed in their garden mint sauce makes a non-mint lover feel as if lamb and mint were born to be together like salt and pepper.

Steamed greens, chilli, garlic, lemon

Having set menus we are used to having the desserts placed in the middle to share, so it was a nice surprise when dessert arrived and they were alternated. Everyone had a dessert each! However, we still like to share!

Caramel parfait, peanut praline, yellow peach

“It’s ice cream, eat the parfait first!” Miss FJ notes before anyone digs their forks into either dessert. Lucky the scorching heat had not yet hit us when we had this, or else it would have been a puddle of melted ice cream. Break the peanut praline and dig into a spoonful of caramel ice cream makes the world a better place. The crunch, the ice cream coolness, the sweetness. Perfect.

Orange, passionfruit pavlova, orange sorbet

The meringue was all things good, but I am probably used to mum’s pavlovas where it still offers a little bit of a chew inside. However, I do demolish the hard shell as much as I can before Miss JN noticed.

Ricotta cheesecake

Hugging our stomachs, we didn’t think we could fit in more food! But wait… there’s more! Where there is a birthday, there shall be a cake! Miss CC organised a ricotta cheesecake from Papa Patisserie and it was simply delicious! It felt so light, that I went for seconds and instantly regretted it as then it was not so light anymore. Unfortunately they did spell Miss ES’ name wrong, and that was after Miss CC spelling it word by word slowly …

So, how do you like to spend your birthdays? And have you reached a point where every year you are just the same age all over again?

Hit: Crispy quail, CHISWICK marinara
Miss: Garden radish

65 Ocean Street


Pasticceria Papa (cake)
Shop LG, 1-4
75 Hall St,
Bondi Beach

Thanks to my girls and their boys for such a lovely meal and giving me an 'unforgettable' birthday.

Chiswick on Urbanspoon Pasticceria Papa on Urbanspoon


  1. that lamb looks amazing and happy birthday!!

  2. I think the idea of settling on one age and sticking with that sounds like a brilliant one! :D Happy Birthday to youuuu!!