June 13th, 2011

Does My Bomb Look Big In This?

Review - Bistro 80

The flame trees will guide the hungry diner to this rebadged space in the slot once occupied by Sean’s Kitchen.

Under the helm of Head Chef Paul Gaspa, the less rarefied menu remains in the realm of reef and beef, with a noticeable drop in prices.

Whilst the talented Jean-Baptiste Robert (who once worked for Joël Robuchon) would be forgiven for wondering what he did in a past life to deserve this posting, he manages the floor here with the same commitment he had at Astral. His suggestions, the Carpaccio of Beef ($19) and...

...the Pot Roasted Chicken ($32), both over-deliver on expectations. The tasty chook rolling in exotic mushrooms is comfort epitomised.

Even so, it’s hard to best the well-presented seafood, eyeballed on the way to the table.

Moreton Bay Bugs ($12/each)
are rarely cooked better – one flick of the fork and they’re out. Alaskan King Crab Legs ($14/100g) should be consumed last, lest they blow your bugs out of the water.

Obscenely good lakeside Pambula and surfside Merimbula Oysters ($3.50/each) are expertly shucked to order, dripping in briny liquor. Speaking of booze, the flavourful Bloody Mary ($14) is a standout, as is the affordable 2008 Pichot Coteau de la Biche Chenin Blanc ($60).

The O'Connor Pasture Fed Scotch ($44) came with a wickedly good Bearnaise. At this point my dining companion mumbled something about wanting to be alone with it, which I felt it best to ignore.

Instead I focused my attention on the Pomme Puree ($8) which was generous and smooth.

We also tried a generous serve of Honey Roasted Organic Carrots ($8).

Needless to say, next time I want an assemble-my-own seafood platter hit, this is where I'll be coming.

Bistro 80
Level 2, Star City, 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont
Ph: (1800) 700 700

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