Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Bistrode, Bourke St, Surry Hills

Bistrode, Bourke St, Surry Hills
Wednesday 16 August, 2006

I have wanted to visit this gorgeous place for ages - I had read the reviews, salivated over the recipes they shared and was looking for an opportunity to go. My dinner buddy this evening had actually been before and also to several of my other suggestions. Well, my persistence paid off as my dinner buddy was more than willing to return. Now, I was more eager than ever!

Having visited Langton's earlier this year (sadly, it closed in July) I was thrilled to learn that Jeremy & Jane (Bistrode owners) met in the kitchen. What a great story!

Bistrode is located on Bourke St just near Il Baretto (the Italian institution). It can be a nightmare to park around here, so be prepared. I walked past Il Baretto and it was packed to the rafters with eager diners waiting on the sidewalk. When I arrived outside Bistrode there was only one table occupied - what the?@*. This didn't last for long - by 7.30pm there were no spare tables.

It's a simple setting - large windows, old skinny front doors and a long bar that dominates the inside space. On arrival I ordered a glass of wine from their extensive wine list but sadly the wines by glass were quite limited, with only one offering per variety. The menu itself was presented on coloured A4 paper and presented on thin cardboard attached with a paper clip - I thought it looked a bit cheap. Even though it was dated today I thought they could have made more of an effort.

However, the menu itself offered some wonderful meals, hearty, home cooked meals that make you feel like you are at a friend's place for dinner. After we decided on our meals, some fresh spelt sour dough was delivered to the table - it was divine. After must deliberation I ordered the Mullaway with beans and bacon and my dinner buddy ordered the Roast Chicken with witlof. Both were lovely and the servings were just right. We also splurged on some french beans that were exceptional.

After enjoying another glass of wine we decided to check out the dessert menu - I opted for the Chocolate tart with milk & mint sorbet and my dinner buddy selected the winter fruit crumble with clotted cream. The chocolate tart melted in your mouth and the milk & mint sorbet was surprising. I would have preferred just mint.

At times the service was nowhere to be found which was frustrating but there appeared to be only 2 staff working the floor. I'm glad I can now cross this one off my list - the food was lovely - but I couldn't help feeling they could so much more to take it to the next level.

Bistrode - 478 Bourke St, Surry Hills - (02) 9380 7333


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