HAR­BOUR HIGHS

This iconic Syd­ney restau­rant is the per­fect place to drink in those stun­ning wa­ter views – with a glass in one hand and a fork in the other

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Stellar - - Eat out - West Es­planade, Manly Cove, man­ly­pavil­ion.com.au.

THE BISTRO, MANLY PAVILION: RE­VIEWED BY AN­THONY HUCKSTEP

THERE are few bet­ter things to do than catch a ferry across Syd­ney Har­bour to Manly dur­ing the day. Skim­ming across the glis­ten­ing blue is a breath­tak­ing re­minder of just how good we have it. And with the re-born Manly Pavilion await­ing your ar­rival, it’s as good a rea­son as any to take the ride.

Owned by the Mi­ra­mare Group, the her­itage-listed pavilion was orig­i­nally built in 1933 to give lo­cals some­where to slip into their bathers. Now lo­cals are whet­ting their ap­petite in the bar, en­joy­ing long, lan­guid lunches or watch­ing the wa­ter while eat­ing din­ner at The Bistro. Floor-to-ceil­ing win­dows frame panoramic views, while an al­fresco bal­cony wraps around the gold­fish bowl restau­rant. In­side, the fit-out of pol­ished con­crete floors, ban­quettes, bistro chairs and hang­ing plants pro­vides a smart-ca­sual feel.

Service is swift and sin­cere, and the af­ford­able wine list is clearly de­signed to get you bend­ing the arm. Tus­can-born chef An­drea Corsi (Cala Luna) re­sists the urge to over­com­pli­cate things as he bridges the gap of clas­sic Ital­ian and mod­ern Aus­tralian. There’s a von­gole lin­guine made rich with bot­targa.

Just make sure you or­der the gnudi. The light spinach and ri­cotta dumplings ar­rive in a pud­dle of tomato veloute with basil leaves on top. It’s sim­ply de­light­ful.

Braised oc­to­pus ten­ta­cles wade in a cherry tomato, chilli and ca­per stew, and though the chef for­got to add potato, it doesn’t need them. Roasted egg­plant is sup­ported by pomegranate, mint and burnt but­ter labne. A veal Mi­lanese with fries is brought to life with a squeeze of lemon, though I can give the cap­sicum and tomato rel­ish a miss.

Corsi’s ‘Manly Pav’ – meringue, cham­pagne cream, rasp­ber­ries and pas­sion­fruit curd – is re­fined, yet sat­is­fy­ing, a lit­tle like The Bistro it­self.

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