Saturday, June 17, 2017

Ramen and more at Cool Mac Cafe, Kirribilli

I must've been Nihonjin in my past life as I feel so attached to the Japanese culture and food especially ramen! There hasn't been much movement in the Sydney ramen scene in a while. But in the last month, more ramen spots started popping up. Cool Mac Cafe in Kirribilli is one of those places.

That's right folks, this Japanese-inspired cafe is offering ramen almost on a weekly basis as part of a secret menu. I found out about their ramen offerings via Dachshund Cafe's chef, Shota Taguchi. My ramen-loving homie RockaHenry and I decided to check the joint Cool Mac. The space is very reminiscent of rustic bistro cafes in Japan. The coffee is sourced from Campos and the menu has a mixture of contemporary Aussie cafe fare and Japanised-Western dishes.

Their house blend is from Campos so expect for bold and sweet chocolate notes through your flat white ($3.80) or latte. They also have single origin coffee available if you prefer a short or long black ($3.80).

Cool Mac's owner Eugene and Head Chef Jun are fans of Gumshara plus Jun-san is originally from Kumamoto, Kyushu (the birthplace of tonkotsu ramen). So it's the obvious thing to go with a kotteri tonkotsu ramen ($16) for their ramen special
Their ramen ticks all the boxes for a great bowl of kotteri tonkotsu ramen: smooth thick gravy-like pork bone broth with a good shoyu tare for a robust depth and umami, a nice amount of negi and chewy braised shio menma for a dash of sweetness, thick tender juicy chashu, perfectly flavoured ajitama with custardy yolk, nori and chewy curly noodles. It was great and we crushed it!

Then there's their "katsu chemist" roll ($15) with panko crumbed super juicy fried chicken, lettuce, tomato, tonkatsu sauce and house tartare in a soft milk bun. This was amazing! One of the best fried chicken rolls/sandwiches around.

The Taco San is their take on the Okinawa dish Taco Rice. Rice topped with melted cheese, chilli minced beef, avocado, tomato, egg, aioli and chilli sauce. Squeeze some lime juice, mix and you get an awesome bowl of taco flavoured goodness.

Follow Cool Mac on Facebook and Instagram for more updates on their next ramen special dates!

Cool Mac Cafe
Shop 2, 34 Burton St
Kirribilli NSW
Mon to Fri 6am to 3.30pm

Sat & Sun 7am to 4pm
Cool Mac Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Bacco Osteria e Espresso - Angel Place, Sydney

There is no shortage of places for a great pasta feed and contemporary Italian cuisine in Sydney. You got joints like Fratelli Fresh, ACME, Chester White and more. If you love this form of carbs and Italian food in general like I do, you should also add Bacco Osteria to your list!

Chefs Andrew Cibej (restaurateur behind Ester, Berta, 121BC and Vini) and Scott Williams (ex-Movida) has collaborated and opened Bacco in the middle of the ever-growing Angel Place dining district. Bacco is a cafe by day and licenced restaurant by night. It is contemporary trattoria style restaurant that takes classic Italian fare to another level. Their pastas are exceptional and the dishes are very produced driven. The restaurant menu consists of antipasti, primi, secondi, dolce and a wide range wine list.

We started with their artichokes and straciatella ($18) and it was insane! Beautifully braised artichokes that were sweet and tender with a milky and stretchy straciatella di bufala cheese. It also came with buttered crispy bread that was perfect for scooping the stracciatella with.

The Primi special that night was a Phillip Island scallops ($18) that were freshly shipped from Victoria that day. The scallops were plump, sweet and perfectly cooked. The buttery pesto based sauce that it came with was divine and full of umami.

Speaking of umami, the spaghetti alla chittara, sea urchin,  and beach banana ($28) was another amazing umami packed dish. The perfectly al dente handmade chitarra pasta was coated with a somewhat buttery and cheesey like sea urchin and beach banana sauce. The sauce also had hints of sweetness.

Another winner was their gnocchi with pistachio and pecorino ($24). The gnocchi is apparently based on Chef Andrew's Nonna's recipe. The buttery sauce combined with sweet, nutty, creamy pistachios and sharp umami of pecorino cheese was sensational with the beautiful gnocchi. I love this dish to bits!

Their hanger steak with anchovy and radish ($28) butter was amazing! The anchovy butter with the tender, smoky and perfectly seasoned medium hanger steak is one of the best steaks I've had in Sydney. 

I wish we had more space for desserts, as I would have loved to try their baked ricotta cheesecake and almond & pear tart. I love that they utilised butter for most of their dishes and they do it extremely well. The service here is also exceptional. I highly recommend visiting them ASAP!

Bacco Osteria e Espresso
No.1, 2-12 Angel Pl
Sydney NSW 2000
Phone: 02 92353383
Espresso: Mon – Fri: 7 – 5

Osteria: Mon - Fri 12 - 10:30, Sat 5:30 - 10:30
Bacco Osteria e Espresso Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato