Sunday, April 29, 2012

Taste of Sydney 2012, Centennial Park

Sorry for the lateness of this review. The last two months have been so busy for me so doing an epic post like this was going to take a while. Plus uploading photos from iPhone can be a bit of a pain...
Anyone for table tennis?

Considering how messed up the weather was lately, it was no surprise that Thursday's session of Taste of Sydney got cancelled due to the epic downpour of rain (and flooding!!!). Thankfully, the weather over the next few days was perfect but the ground was pretty muddy.

After attending Taste of Sydney over the past couple of years, it was no surprise that the restaurants appearing at the festival will deliver an array of amazing dishes and this year was no exception. In fact I thought there were too many dishes to choose from and not enough Crowns (currency used at Taste festivals) or stomach to devour them all. Most menu items are worth 8, 10 or 12 Crowns with exception to Icon dishes which varies between 8 to 20 Crowns and even 32 Crowns for one Icon dish from Flying Fish.

Hope you are full enough to enjoy the next batch of photos featuring a selection of dishes observed and/or tasted that day. (Warning: Avert your eyes if you are a vegetarian or love little piggies...)


Parppadelle curtains <3

Salt cod, potato and truffle fritters with tarragon mayonaise - FAVE


Epic line for Charlie and Co

Wagyu Beef and Cheese Slider - FAVE

Ever since Taste of Sydney opened, this dish has constantly made appearances on Chef Justin North's menus to date. And it's no surprise why this is the case. The burger was so juicy and the melted cheese is matched perfectly to give it a bit more flavour.


Sher F1 Wagyu meatball, gremolata, and a salad of local and Italian cabbage


Epic crowd!

Kadayif wrapped King Prawns, Walnut Capsicum Muhammara

Traditional charcoal BBQ lamb and veal kebab, smoked eggplant and Chobani Greek Yogurt - this was awarded Best Dish at Taste of Sydney

Pistachio dessert trio of Baklava, Dolma and Kadayif


In my opinion I thought there were a lot of stand out dishes at the Four in Hand tent and it's not just because of their suckling pig...

Suckling pig on a roast (come at me bro...)

Smoked Salmon, Chorizo and Mozzarella Croquette

Roast Suckling Pig, Coleslaw, Onion Rings and Hot Sauce -FAVE

Pigs tail with Corn and Crab salad with Lobster bisque - Icon dish - FAVE


Yellow Curry of Chicken with Cucumber Relish

Crisp Pork Belly, Pickled Daikon and Chilli Jam in a Sweet Roll - FAVE


Crisp Brisket of Pasture-fed Beef with Creamed Wild Mushrooms - FAVE

Braised Shoulder of Lamb with Polenta and Green Sauce


Smoked Veal Rump, Vegetable Ash and Radish


Slow cooked and Caramelised Short Rib with Bone Marrow(!) Persillade


For the first time in Taste of Sydney, a different pop up restaurant is opened under the Sustainable Pop-Up Tent everyday. Because of the rain, the pop-up restaurant for Thursday was moved to Friday which gave a lot more options for the hungry masses. The following pics are from Sunday's pop-up restaurant: Agape Organic Restaurant - which is also opening their own food truck in the near future.

Roasted rosnay figs stuffed with Quark, pecorino, mozzarella, apple balsamic, popped quinoa and basil

Slow roasted Berkshire Pork Scotch Fillet, rosemary, fennel, apple, sage, polenta and salsa verde

Gundoee Wagyu Sirloin, slow braised brisket, honey roasted carrots, royal black quinoa & truffle butter

Chocolate and spelt brownie, almond praline, vanilla cream and chocolate sauce

Alcoholic staples that you would easily recognise at clubs (such as Agwa bombs, Alize lemonade, Patron Tequila and Absinthe) have been a major presence at Taste this year where attendees try out samples of a variety of drinks or just buy a glass to chill out and soak in the atmosphere.


Patron shots (also Absinthe Green Fairy stand is next door)

Of course, there were tents for food suppliers such as artisan producers, wine estates, dessert patisseries and other exciting suppliers for various ingredients where you can sample and shop for whatever you need to try some of your favourite dishes.

Ice cream sandwiches!

Even Zumbo Patissier made an appearance!

There was also the Taste Kitchen, demonstrations and chef table sessions featuring a number of well known chefs like Justin North, Shaun Presland, Colin Fassnidge, Peter Kuruvita and Manu Feildel. Speaking of Manu, there was a surprise session near the end of the session featuring Manu, Vincent Gadan and Damien Parcineau under the De Dietrich Demonstration Kitchen. Here the three French celebrity chefs (ooh la la!) battle against the clock to make a recipe based on a set of ingredients. All in good fun and lots of hilarious banter between the chefs.

Can you feel the heat in here?

Throughout the day, there were DJs and musicians keeping us entertained in various areas of the festival. Even inside the restaurant tents like at Longrain and Otto Restaurant.

Of course there wasn't the chance to try them all mainly due to a bloated stomach. Plus there were several instances of the dish selling out very early such as L'etoile's pork belly with prunes. At the end, I was pretty sad that I had to wait for another year for this festival to come back with even more incredible dishes but definitely very satisfied at making the most of the experience this year compared to previous years. Plus this is also a great opportunity to check out some restaurants that you wouldn't hear about as often as the main staples and seeing them getting heaps of exposure - notably Efendy and the sustainable restaurants. Hope everyone had a mad time eating, drinking, shopping and perving at celebrity chefs at Taste of Sydney.

Taste of Sydney

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