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Review - The Village

New owners, Barossa Valley Wine brothers Dylan and Justin Fairweather, have dropped the New York aspirational ‘East’ (this used to be The East Village Hotel), and made this Darlo icon a well-priced dining proposition. Their wine connections make for a more interesting gastro-pub wine list. The 2009 Juniper Estate ‘Reserve’ Chardonnay ($68) hinted at the promise of vines about to hit their fifteenth year.

Well-chosen flowers, curved wooden chairs, terracotta water jugs and a retro cake keeper give the light and airy room a rustic, Laura Ashley feel.

A spoonful of Kingfish Tartare made for a unexpected and nice amuse bouche beginning.

In the kitchen Yorkshire lad Adam Spencer turns out flavoursome and seasonally appropriate entrees like Peas and Ham ($14). Adam’s playful deconstruction of split pea and ham soup featuring quail eggs, salty pancetta crumbs, pea panna cotta and pea puree, is visually and orally exciting; I just wanted more!

Ditto for the tiny trio of Scallops ($15) with clever candied fennel.

A well-cooked main of Pork Belly ($28) had me wishing the tasty black pudding wasn’t hidden away in potato.

Gnocchi ($24) with zucchini, hazelnuts and goat’s curd was curiously tubular, but engaging none-the-less.

Bursting berries in a very summery Moscato Jelly ($12) and...

...negotiating the self-assembly Chocolate Lamington ($12) added to the fun. Arrive before sunset to enjoy a river of bats spilling across the spectacular view.

The Village
234 Palmer Street, Darlinghurst
Ph: (02) 9331 5457

The Village on Urbanspoon



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 29th, 2010 12:24 pm (UTC)
Noma influence in plating
the gnocchi reminds me of the style i had at becasse once. looks like the style of dishing these days has been influenced by Noma perhaps? :-)
Nov. 29th, 2010 12:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
Makes sense. I like seeing verrines spring up about town, fun to eat, though I usually bugger up photographing them in the dark with my pocket sized camera!
Nov. 29th, 2010 12:45 pm (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
i think you did a pretty good job of photographing the verrine. i use a compact camera too and it's a real challenge when lighting is really dim — i start looking for the candles to light dishes up :-)
Nov. 29th, 2010 01:09 pm (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
Me too! I keep thinking I should take my miner's headlamp!
Nov. 29th, 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
don't joke now, i used to actually carry around 2 small flashlights but it got a little silly — but it helped. i sometimes look around for the kitchen pass and get tempted to take my dish up to it to photograph it. otherwise i try and get the waiter to tell me when the dish is ready so i can possibly take a shot at the pass. when it gets to this stage it's time to start thinking about getting a DSRL :-)
Nov. 30th, 2010 05:38 am (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
LOL! It's already such a production!
Mar. 29th, 2011 11:27 pm (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
hi im Adam the chef. Its funny because i hadnt previously seen the noma cook book and i see what you are saying. I think its more of a philosophy thing rather than plating style. Natural, spacious and an exhibition of ingredients that's simple and artistic...well in theory
(sounds slightly pretentious now that i have read it)ha
Mar. 30th, 2011 12:20 am (UTC)
Re: Noma influence in plating
Hey Adam, thanks for the clarification!

Since many Sydney chefs are doing it, it's possible someone else was interested in Noma, and as a result a Sydney style has evolved. I see this type of plating a lot, but not all of it is as successful as your beautiful plate of quail eggs.
Vanessa Smart
Aug. 20th, 2015 12:06 am (UTC)
Adam Spencer and Dylan Fairweather stole workers' wages
The East Village Hotel did not pay out any employee superannuation and those workers that asked about their super were immediately fired. Even after starting a case with the NSW Fair Trade Department, the case I started is still 'pending' after almost 3 years. I hope former employees have started to take action against these crooks.

Edited at 2015-08-20 12:06 am (UTC)
Aug. 26th, 2015 01:08 pm (UTC)
Re: Adam Spencer and Dylan Fairweather stole workers' wages
That's awful to hear Vanessa Smart, I am for fair pay for fair work, and penalty rates. I hope all employees get their owed benefits. I participated in the recent campaign putting pressure on Grill'd to pay award rates, and reinstate the sacked employee who raised the matter. Always willing to work so this industry abides by fair work practices.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )