Gourmet Traveller (Australia) - - Sydney Review -


Don Bo­carte an­chovies for $20? Or Cuca for $12? Either way, be­ing given a tin of cured fish to drape over a mari­nara pizza is a spe­cial kind of plea­sure. Such is life at Bella Brutta (above), the New­town digs where Luke Pow­ell has traded the smoker at LP’s Qual­ity Meats for wood fire and a slow fer­ment. LP’s pep­per­oni and clams top other pizze, but the front of the menu, where ’nduja is stirred through white beans and burnt man­darin dresses leaves of radic­chio, is the real high­light. Bella Brutta, 135 King St, New­town, (02) 9922 5941


A dis­creet EO and neon “Psy­chic” sign are the only mark­ers out­side Em­ploy­ees Only, the Syd­ney off­shoot of the NYC cock­tail bar, but al­ready half the city is squeez­ing in. Late-night might be the best time to or­der cala­mari with sauce rav­ig­ote and an Im­proved Mar­garita shaken with Coin­treau and orange blos­som. Chef Aure­lien Gi­rault (Nour) is also serv­ing plates of EO Spe­cial Staff Meal to guests, while tarot reader, Nar­dine, is on hand to peer into your fu­ture. 9a Bar­rack St, Syd­ney


Banchō, from the Tokyo Bird team, has opened near Mar­ket City, billing it­self as a small bar for Chi­na­town. It’s not ac­tu­ally that small, but the food menu is lim­ited to a few bao and deep-fried things on sticks. Ja­panese whisky is the go, but staff know their Scotch and new-wave Tai­wanese bot­tles al­most as well as their Chita and their Nikka Taket­suru. There are bot­tle lock­ers for reg­u­lars, and wildly ad­dic­tive sticks of fried spaghetti in what we’re told is “seafood and sea­weed salt”. 10 Thomas Ln, Hay­mar­ket, (02) 8097 9512

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