Home » Sydney » Fine Dining » Delectably Classy @Aria Restaurant Sydney

Delectably Classy @Aria Restaurant Sydney

Dates of Visits:  A couple of times in April 2013

From the moment you enter the well-polished brass doors, you are well and truly looked after.  With a classy interior that looks out to the Sydney Harbour and Opera House and waited on by smart attentive staffs (fit too, from pushing the brass doors, I presume?), Aria Restaurant Sydney is clearly a perfect place to dine, impress and to entertain.

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Aria is owned by celebrity chef Matt Moran who had guest chefed on Masterchefs TV series and other TV shows; and restaurateur, Peter Sullivan.  Aria is highly regarded both locally and internationally, holding two coveted Chef’s Hats.

A night out at Aria is pricey, but they also have a pre-theatre service from 5:30pm to 7pm which is 20-30% cheaper from the dinner service: $44 for once-course, $72 for two-courses and $89 for three-courses.  The only ‘catch’ is that you have to leave around 7pm when the dinner service starts.  This is an entrepreneurial idea with each table doing 2 rounds of businesses and also fantastic for the patrons attending shows at Opera House wanting an early yet economical dinner.  Best of all,, it’s a good deal since items on both the pre-theatre and dinner menus are identical and standard portions are served.

I have been to Aria numerous times, and had always enjoyed their first class service and wonderful food and wine.  This month I was able to sample and see nearly all the dishes presented in their April Menu.  Here are my iPhone moments.

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AMUSE BOUCHE

Amuse Bouche is served in both pre-theatre and dinner services.  

I had the carrot, sweet walnuts, lime and coriander soup in the dinner service, whereas I had the mushroom soup (pic below) in the pre-theatre service

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APPETIZERS

OYSTERS

Six freshly shucked Pacific oysters with cucumber, sea water pearls and aged sherry vinegar.

I wasn’t too sure of the freshness of the oysters, a bit sulphurous for my liking, but the pops of the briny salty sea-water pearls to cleanse my palate was a nice touch.

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EGG

Warm slow cooked bio dynamic egg, patatas bravas, asparagus and morcilla

I was expecting a runny yolk but I was pleasantly surprised that the egg has been sous-vided, so it was a semisolid gel-like custard that can be cut through.  I can’t remember the other accompaniments on the plate, but the salted pop corn added a nice touch – chicken eats corn to lay eggs (touch of humour there, perhaps?)  Morcilla is blood pudding by the way.

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MAINS

CAULIFLOWER

Twice baked soufflé with warrigal greens, cauliflower and a raisin and caper dressing.  

This is a Vegetarian dish which I thoroughly enjoyed.  The slightly bitter chargrilled  cauliflower was paired perfectly with the sweet creamy  soufflé which had shreds of native spinach (warrigal greens)

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CHICKEN 

Baked Holmbrae chicken with ‘mac and cheese’, charred leeks and a truffle sauce

This was a very interesting dish.  There were 2 pieces of chicken if I remember correctly – a baked chicken off the bone and another piece of chicken wrapped in ham and fried.  The wedge of baked ‘mac and cheese’ was wonderful

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BEEF

Char grilled O’Connor sirloin with confit carrot, potato rosti, star anise  and onion sprouts

Technically, the sirloin cannot be faulted.

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BARRAMUNDI

Crispy skin Cone Bay barramundi with rye spaetzle, horseradish, curly kale and beetroot

Again, another perfectly cooked fish, tender meat falling off the crispy skin

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DESSERT

CHOCOLATE

Valrhona Jivara chocolate tart with caramelised hazelnuts and vanilla choc ice

This is a sinfully rich dessert.  Not for the faint hearted!  Best to share

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PANNACOTTA

Roasted almond pannacotta with honey infused mandarins, blackcurrant and almond crumble

Creative plating with 5 delectable pannacottas decorated with foam instead of the usual big plain mould I am so used to.  It’s accompanied by guava instead of mandarins

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PARFAIT

Tonka bean parfait with muntries, raspberries and tamarillo sorbet

This is a ‘healthier’ dessert option, ice-cream sandwiched between two wafer-thin shortcrust and another scoop of sorbet for the road

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SOUFFLÉ

Banana and chocolate chip soufflé with a dulce de leche ice cream

Loved the presentation

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PETIT FOURS

Identical Petit Fours were served for both the pre-theatre and dinner services: Chocolate truffles, friands and burnt sugar thins

  Unfortunately, I can’t say that the petit fours tasted as nice  as my desserts.

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Enjoying the iconic views while walking to the car park at the Opera House to pick up my car.  My 3-coure a la carte dinner worked out to be $126 (Egg, Chicken, Parfait – in case you are curious)

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