A bone to pick
With her background in nose-to-tail cooking, head chef Alysia Chan is a natural fit for The Black Swan’s produce-centric new menu which pays as much attention to vegetables and seafood as it does to meat. Her crowd-pleasing broccoli and pine nut hummus ($14) and homemade sourdough with beef fat butter ($8) prove that minimising waste can make for delicious, moreish bites; Chan uses sweet but usually discarded broccoli stems for the former and rendered beef fat for the latter. The chophouse mains make secondary cuts the star, from a juicy, tender Mishima Reserve Wagyu Ultra Flat Iron ($60, 250g) at MBS8+ to a flank-like Westholme Wagyu Bavette ($54, 250g) at MBS6-7. Vintage beef from Australia offers another dimension of funk – breeding cattle, at least five years old, are dry-aged for 30 days, resulting in grassfed flavours tinged with yellow marbling in the Porterhouse ($152, 800g) and Ribeye ($60, 300g).
You will need a return trip to get in some of the excellent Venue clams $24) with bacon and beer runoff, grilled Maine lobster with black barley and corn risotto ($60) and roasted Hokkaido pork loin ($38) made edgier with vanilla cauliflower purée and raisin pinenut agrodolce (sweet sour sauce). 19 Cecil Street. Tel: 6438 3757