As the liar from the Shire might enquire: how good is Bondi’s off-season? Being able to find a parking space resurrects Bondi Beach as a dining destination, though I wish Waverley Council would support their local restaurants with appropriate off-season rates on their wallet-gouging parking fees. It set us back over twenty bucks to park for the duration of a one-course dinner.
To be honest, I should have used a ride-share vehicle anyway: Panama House has an amazing tequila collection, and – across two separate visits – knowledgeable bar staff who can really do it justice.
The El Jolgorio Espadin ($38/90ml carafe), made with agave Espadin from growers who wait until their agave plants are eight to ten years old before they harvest them, has so much going on it stretches my mezcal vocabulary. There’s sweetness, an ethanol flash, lingering smoke and green peppercorns rolled up into an intriguing drop that’s hard to pull apart.
Being the designated driver, after a taste that had me almost whimpering for more, I moved onto the 2018 Kerri Greens Pinots de Mornington Rosé ($15/glass). Produced in the Mornington Peninsula, it’s a light, salmon pink blend of pinots (noir, Meunier and gris) that’s red fruit forward without resorting to just being pretty. There’s cherry, white pepper, a minerally chemical whiff and just enough savoury characters to suit tonight’s roast pork dinner.
Tucking into a tan leather booth with a bunch of mates to share a Sunday roast is a nice way to cap off any weekend. For Panama House's newly launched Sunday Supper Club, two school night appropriate time slots of 4.30pm and 6.30pm replace their regular menu.
For $30 each, you get a sharing meal of roast meat and veggies that changes weekly.
For us that was roast pork belly – sadly without crackling – and anise pears.
There were big soft wedges of baked pumpkin, whole baby spuds and bowls of sautéed spinach and pea tendrils that I quite enjoyed.
White it wasn’t anything you couldn’t whip up at home, it eats well enough with the jug of proffered gravy; and keeps the home kitchen clean and ready for the busy week ahead. I would have liked to see the South American component of this restaurant come through more strongly in this offering, perhaps with some chimichurri to cut through the pork belly’s gelatinous fat.
NOTE: See a brunch review of this venue back HERE.
180-186 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach
Ph: (02) 8090 5882