Four in Hand Hotel : 105 Sutherland St, Paddington

July 27, 2013 at 8:50 pm (Bar, European, Sydney)

Four in Hand

Located on a quiet street corner in swish Paddington, Four in Hand Hotel is not your typical pub.  Behind the unassuming exterior is a classically styled bar; black and white tiled floor underlying elegant bentwood stools surrounding a white-tiled bar with a beautiful stained timber top.  On game days, the Four is buzzing with activity, packed with sports-watching locals.  At quieter times, it’s a great spot for a casual catch-up, particularly with the cosy dining area near the kitchen, complete with fireplace.

Four in Hand - Bar

Chef Colin Fassnidge’s nose-to-tail bar menu will change your idea of pub food forever and is excellent value for money.  It’s quite tempting to simply eat your way through the grazing menu, featuring juicy BBQ ribs, slow-cooked pig’s ear, crumbed and fried schnitzel-style, and salt cod and chorizo croquettes, gorgeously crunchy on the outside and soft and fluffy in the middle.

Four in Hand - Croquettes

Larger plates range from pub favourites (think crispy battered fish, juicy steaks and minced beef burgers topped with bite-y cheddar, pickles, beetroot and creamy rouille, requisite golden hand cut chips on the side) to hearty dishes of slow-cooked beef brisket with Irish colcannon and luxurious confit pork belly.  Double thumbs up for the fork-tender braised lamb shoulder, served with sweet peas and flavoursome minted sauce, and (surprise-hit) corned beef with cheesy horseradish dumplings in a clear, intense vegetable broth, dotted with herb oil.  Get a big enough group together and you can enjoy a whole roast pork belly with all the trimmings.

Four in Hand - Braised Lamb

Four in Hand - Corned Beef

All this amazing food before we even make it to the fine-dining restaurant, which will have to wait for a special occasion.
 
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Macaroned

January 13, 2013 at 9:43 pm (Coffee, Dessert, Sydney)

Imagine my surprise on arriving home to find that a macaron store has opened in Greenacre.  The bright pink shop front of Macaroned is impossible to miss, the cheery colour scheme extending to the interior, where you’ll find glass cabinets filled with a range of unique macarons.  The friendly enthusiastic staff, sporting cheeky branded T-shirts, are knowledgeable about the products and happy to make some recommendations if you are overwhelmed by options 😛

Macaroned

Creative genius Asma, who trained under Adriano Zumbo and Baroque’s Jean-Michel Raynaud, has catered brilliantly to Greenacre’s demographic.  All ingredients are Halal, and you’ll find flavours ranging from favourites like salted caramel, chocolate and coconut to pistachio halva, Turkish delight, date and orange cardamom.  The top selling flavour to date is watermelon, with honeycomb on the way up.

Macaroned-fairy floss

Macaroned-redskin

Macaroned-cola

The macarons are very reasonably priced; around $2.50 or less per macaron depending on how many you buy.  Stop by for a coffee and macaron combo, Gould Estate coffee and two macarons for about $7, and get a 6, 12 or 24 pack takeaway.

Macaroned-box

Macaroned-plate

Mei and I sampled New York Cheesecake, Chewy Peanut Caramel and Toasted Coconut, and were also treated to a Christmas special, Egg Nog.  They were faultless; light, crispy biscuits, creamy fillings, very distinct flavours.  Big thumbs up for Egg Nog, which was well recommended.  I actually rate these over zumbarons, which tend to be quite dense.  We had to take some home for Mum to try, adding Tiramisu, Dark Chocolate and Salted Caramel to the mix.

Macaroned-cheesecake

Macaroned-egg nog

Macaroned-peanut

Flavours I would love to try are Cherry Ripe, Salted Popcorn and Rose Water (to name a few), and I’m hoping to catch the reappearance of some of Asma’s more adventurous inventions; Coconut and Lemongrass, Vegemite on Toast, Wasabi, Snickers Inspired, Vanilla Custard Macaron Fritters and Chocorons.  Word on the grapevine is that Asma is also looking into adding macaron-inspired desserts to the menu, Luxbite-style.  I’ll be keeping an eye on their Facebook site for updates 😀

 
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