Saturday, June 16, 2007

Clareville Kiosk, Delecta Ave, Clareville

Clareville Kiosk, Delecta Ave, Clareville
Saturday 16 June, 2007

This weekend we re-grouped in Bilgola to reminisce on our recent trip to China and discuss the next one. Bilgola Beach is stunning and it felt like we were a million miles away from Sydney.

Tonight we took the recommendation of our Bilgola buddy and dined at Clareville Kiosk. Nestled amongst the residential homes on Pittwater (just behind Avalon) Clareville Kiosk looks like someones home from the outside. There's a small public car park opposite and you walk up a bricked pathway to the entrance. We were welcomed inside, had our umbrellas and coats taken for safe keeping and were led to our table in the middle of the dining space in front of the wood fire. Charming.

Clareville Kiosk promote themselves as, " an intimate and cosy restaurant located in a unique position near the shores of beautiful Clareville Beach on Sydney's Northern beaches. It has been consistently rated one of the Best BYO's in Sydney by The SMH Good Food Guide."

We had come prepared with 2 bottles - god love BYO restaurants - and asked for the white first. After reviewing the menu and deciding on our meals we were served an amuse bouche of Green asparagus, roasted garlic and truffle oil in a shot glass with a Chinese spoon on the side offering finely diced ocean trout, chilli oil and chives. As I'm not an avid fan of asparagus this did not thrill me but it was beautifully presented and the ocean trout was divine.

For entree I opted for the Sweet roasted spatchcock breast, with salt & pepper squid whilst my diner buddies chose the Pan seared scallops with chorizo & tomato pine nut tapenade, truffle sauce and Open squid ink ravioli with Morton Bay bug tail, ginger & shallot dressing. My spatchcock was sensational - the crispy outer was seasoned and the meat was tender and succulent. The salt & pepper squid was lightly fried and perfectly seasoned giving it a wonderful, lip smacking bite.

As we finished off our entrees the wood fireplace went a little nuts and a mass of smoke went through the dining space. I love the smell of an open fire but this was bordering on a fire hazard. One table was evacuated and the rest of us just went with it whilst the waiters ran to the doors and flung them open to let the smoke escape.

After this event we opened our red wine and got ready for the main meal. I thoroughly enjoyed the Angus tenderloin of beef with truffle hollandaise, potato puree & jus and my dinner buddies loved their Confit of duck with an aromatic corella pear, spinach & drunken almonds & muscatels and Basil crusted rack of lamb with mash potato and garlic & thyme jus. My main was very good - I had requested the meat medium rare and it was cooked to perfection. We also ordered a bowl of salt crusted chat potatoes that were incredibly good and came with a very spicy harissa.

Our Bilgola buddy has ordered the same meal each time she has visited i.e squid ink ravioli and Confit of duck. If this isn't a glowing recommendation I don't know what is. The Clareville Kiosk is very homely and despite it's proximity to the water there are no water views. The bathrooms are located outside the restaurant - you take the front door back out onto the street and go up a side path to find the single male & female toilets. It's well lit but on a cold, wet evening it wasn't fun.

The restaurant was 95% full, there was gentle buzz throughout and the two staff had their work cut out for them meeting the demands of each table. We were on a roll so decided to go with dessert. I ordered the Baked chocolate fondant with white chocolate sorbet & dark chocolate disc and my diner buddies ordered the Cardamom & candied orange brulée with mulberry compote and Caramelised lemon curd tart with clotted cream & raspberries. We hit gold with the desserts - my fondant was incredible - very rich and I placed the entire white chocolate sorbet into the ramekin to cool it down. WOW! I loved every mouthful - it was over the top & decadent.

Clareville Kiosk is a solid experience. I'd like to return for lunch.

Clareville Kiosk - 27 Delecta Ave, Clareville - (02) 9918 2727


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