|Dainty DaisyNecklace: Sass and Bide|
Top: Miss Selfridge
Skirt: H&M, New York
|Purses: Louis Vuitton|
I have been a bit behind on my blogging lately. Life has been a bit hectic! Last week KJ, GJ and I dined at "Food Society" in Darlinghurst. You don't see many successful Balkan restaurants around. It doesn't appear to be a greatly popular cuisine which is unfortunate for us as it is amongst our favourite! Being Serbian the menu infusion of Eastern European dishes is right up our alley.
"Food Society" is located at the Oxford Street end of Riley Street. When you enter you walk down several steps leading you underground. You are instantly taken from the bustling of Oxford Street to the underground of Eastern Europe!
Although the decor is all extremely interesting and well done it doesn't have a particular theme. It is more a mis-match of old and new. The sandstone walls instantly add drama. At the entrance there is a huge red velvet armchair and a piano hanging on the wall. Once you make your way down the stairs you enter the large open dining space with a huge bar situated across the back wall. The rest of the space is taken up with tables and chairs.
In one corner of the room there is a mismatched array of old cupboards filled with odd cutlery. If you follow this wall down past the bar there are several intimate tables for two with huge armchairs. On the other side of this corridor there is a bar with stools which faces the open kitchen. This is for diners who like to watch their food being prepared before being served to them. At the end of the corridor before you get to the loos are two large shelves filled with anything and everything they could possibly scour from op shops!
The menu is designed to share and is broken up into appetisers, boards, breads, substantials, sides and sweets. They also offer a communal tasting menu for $52 pp. We closely examined what was on offer on the tasting menu and what we wanted to order from the general menu. As most of the items were on the tasting menu we decided that it was far better value to go with the tasting menu. It was definitely worth the money. We received so much food that we hardly touched the last dish as we were that full!
It is so lovely to go to a restaurant and be given complimentary appetisers on arrival. It really doesn't happen often enough in Sydney anymore. We received breadsticks and gherkins. Yum, so perfect for our palettes! GJ started off with a shot of slivovitz. Deadly!
|Complimentary Pickles and Breadsticks|
The communal tasting menu was placed in the middle of the table so that we were aware of what we would be receiving. First out was a plate of brioche type bread and Burek cigar of feta, spinach and mint. The bread was sweet and a perfect accompaniment to scoop up any left over sauces on dishes to come. The pastry on the cigar was thin and crispy however the cheese in the filling was extremely powerful. A huge plate of crispy, lightly fried cauliflower then appeared on the table with fresh herbs and spring onion. Deliciously brown and crispy on the outside and very creamy on the inside. Definitely a crowd pleaser! Pelmoni with pork, beef chervil, sour cream and red wine vinegar was served alongside a ricotta and mushroom pierogi with sour cream and chives. The first dish was like a dumpling and although tasty were a little bland. We were not fans of the single serve of ravioli. It had a funny taste and was a little stodgy.
|Burek Cigars and Artesian Bread|
|Mushroom and Ricotta Pierogi|
We then moved from the appetisers to the meat board which, was definitely a standout dish. The wooden board was well presented and consisted of gorgeous, good quality salami, mortadella, proscuitto, picked cabbage, gherkins, breadsticks and the winning char-grilled csabai. The csabai was to die for. Deliciously meaty, full flavoured sausage. I could eat it all day. If only it was good for you!
By the time we got to the mains we were already full! The first to come out was the twice cooked lamb ribs with sliced potatoes, tomato, eggplant and rosemary. When I went to pick up a rib I literally picked up a bare rib as all the meat slipped off the bone back onto the plate. Now, that is the definition of meat falling off the bone! This dish was finger licking good. The lamb was so tender and juicy and the vegetables were roasted to perfection. The crispy skinned ocean trout with herbed eshallot vinaigrette, dill, chervil and capers was also outstanding. The trout broke apart as soon as you touched it. I am a big fan of well cooked trout! The last of the mains was unfortunately the low point of the meal. The goulash society style had over cooked beef cheeks and had a very strong, dry, meaty taste which unfortunately wasn't pleasant. After the other two winning main dishes we hardly touched the goulash. It needed to be more luscious with rich tomato, potatoes and red paprika.
|Crispy Skinned Ocean Trout|
|Twice Cooked Lamb Ribs|
My ethnic background is really evident when I say how much I love cabbage salad! It has to be one of my all time favourite dishes and can be done in so many different ways. Food Society's was really great. The fresh parsley and cherry tomatoes made it extra fresh and light. The dressing was exquisite and added the zing. The steamed green beans in almond butter was also extra tasty. GJ and KJ were so full they could only manage one bean each so it was left up to me to finish them off which, I did with ease!
|Green Beans with Almond Butter|
Our waiter and ever manager, Darius, was extremely friendly and knowledgeable. "Food Society" has been open for 18 months along side his catering company "The Catering Department". The restaurant was full of Eastern Europeans which only means he must be doing a good job to have the restaurant full of locals attracted to the cuisine.
91 Riley Street
Darlinghurst NSW 2010