Thursday, 3 April 2014

Opera Bar, Sydney Opera House

One Friday evening, I made my way to Opera Bar with a bunch of my girlfriends (hereafter called CC, Spoon, Tea and Shell) for a night of chatter and grazing. Tea was visiting us from HK, so we were keen to sit somewhere comfortable. However, as with all the other watering holes in Sydney, the after-work crowd swarmed around the outdoor tables and created a haze out of cigarettes. Indoors, was thankfully non-smoking and, since there's no good view from indoors, there were plenty of tables to choose from!

We slid into a cosy booth, dispatching Spoon on a mission to obtain a jug of Pimm's. The first attempt failed. The bartender thought she could pass for an under-18 teen. It will be a sad day when we treat that as a compliment...

Jug of Pimms (~$40)

We were pretty spoilt for choice in terms of sharing plates. CC recommended the tasting platter for the variety and large portions. She was right in saying that it could feed 4 (though the menu says it serves 2 to 3) - but I'll get to that later.

Lamb ribs were my order. Sweet, sticky and meaty, these honey-glazed morsels fulfilled my carnivorous cravings. Similar to the pickled condiments you get in Cantonese restaurants upon arrival, the accompanying pile of sliced cabbage was sour and vinegary. The others didn't like them because they weren't used to the strong flavour, but I found it enjoyable.

Lamb ribs (~$16.00)

The yam crisps were surprisingly cheap (for the place), considering yam is expensive and this was a bit of a novelty. They were good munchies, but not exactly the main attraction.

Yam Crisps ($8.00)

The tasting platter was really 2 plates, so it felt like pretty good value. The bottom level consisted of a tuna terrine with dill, thin crusty slices of bread, juicy pork belly buns (pretty much gua bao) and chunks of trout on little wooden sticks.

Opera Bar Tasting Plate - 1st tier ($48.00)

The top level was made up of sardines, potato croquettes, mini (not that mini) chicken pies, and small green pickled chillis with cured meat. Shell refused the sardines. I was about to, but figured I might as well give them ago. Really fishy, as expected, but the topping of peppers helped a little. Croquettes were as they should be - crunchy and crumbed outside, but creamy inside.

Opera Bar Tasting Plate - Tier 2 ($48.00)

Satisfying comfort-food.

As an aside, I must say that the skill of the waitstaff at carrying large numbers of glassware was admirable. It wasn't an uncommon sight that night for a man to pass by with glasses stacked from below his waistline and reaching above his head. CC swore the girls could do just as well.

Opera Bar on Urbanspoon

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