Leslie is perpetually on the prowl, always hoping to hit upon an esoteric eatery, out of the way oasis or atypical amusement. She as also a fervent fan of her spirited sundry subscribers and of amazing abounding alliterations.
Published August 14th 2013
What everyone on the North Shore is chirping about
Tucked in a laneway in Gordon hung the most unusual sign. It read, "FOUND: Cockatoo answers to 'Stu'. Won't eat bird seed! Only drinks great wine! Likes chatting up birds and has a fowl mouth! Free to collect here: End March".
If one had peered into that window February last hoping to sight 'Stu the Cockatoo' or whomever was responsible for the public display of bad bird puns, you'd only have seen an eclectic collection of metal bird cages hanging inexplicably from the ceiling. However, since its April opening, patrons have discovered the new tapas and wine bar and 2 Stews and a Cockatoo has quickly become a favourite haunt for North Shore foodies and wine enthusiasts.
The creative force behind 2 Stews and a Cockatoo is long time North Shore residents, Nada and Tony Stewart. Their close attention to detail and inclination toward the whimsical is evident throughout. From the funky vintage furnishings to each classic Sinatra tune playing in the background; it's apparent that Nada and Tony are striving to find a cure for the mundane. Meanwhile, the ubiquitous Stu appears everywhere, brilliantly pulling all of the seemingly unrelated elements together with a bit of humour.
The food is equally inventive. Each morsel is crafted and intended to be a stand-alone experience. The Lamb Rolls with Minted Yoghurt are delicately flavoured and are surprisingly light. So much so, that they actually do melt in your mouth. The Crab Snowballs with Pickled Watermelon are a perfectly inspired blend of sweet, tart and savoury. They make you sad when they are gone. The divinely decadent Molten Chocolate Fondant with Grand Marnier Ice Cream will likely produce an awe inspired moment of silence at your table.
Molten Chocolate Fondant with Grand Marnier Ice Cream
Dinner at 2 Stews is not an inexpensive evening though. The potions are what one generally expects of tapas and I would suggest a minimum of one and a half plates per person. The plates range from 10.00 to 24.00 with most in the 16.00 to 18.00 range. When you add to this a nice bottle of wine, of which 2 Stews and a Cockatoo have many, and dessert then the bill begins to tick up.
2 Stews and a Cockatoo serve dinner Tuesday to Saturday from 6:00 to 10:00 and lunch Wednesday to Friday from noon to 3:00. After dinner, the bar remains open until midnight. For Tuesdays and Wednesdays one can usually book a day ahead. For all other days, book a minimum of a week out to avoid disappointment. As for transport, getting to 2 Stews is quite convenient. It's a fast two minute walk from Gordon Station and there is an abundance of free parking in the car park around back for those who drive.
2 Stews and a Cockatoo would make for a romantic date night, fabulous girl's night out or even a luxurious late night drink. So, should you be considering 2 Stews and a Cockatoo then give it a go. I'm sure you won't egret it.
My partner and I went for a rare night out and decided to go to 2 Stews and a Cockatoo after it was recommended to us by a friend. Wow what an experience. We had the most brilliant night. There was only room left for us to sit at the bar, but that was perfect as it was just the two of us. The atmosphere was fab and the food was amazing. I use to work at Heston Blumenthal's Rest. - The Fat Duck in Bray, UK and I reckon the food was up there with it's presentation, quality,creativity and taste. The wine list was just as amazing. Yes it's not cheap, but who cares, you get what you pay for. Our experience was worth every penny. I would always highly recommend this place to anyone. Can't wait to go back! Well done Nada, Tony and family. I know you guys will be highly successful. :-)
I think the dearth of bars on the North Shore makes everyone a bit too forgiving of average, expensive food and service that falls short of the mark. We all want to love any new offering because we're so grateful to find a new place to go, but just opening your doors isn't enough. Having spent an evening at 2stews with a friend I agree the atmosphere is nice and buzzy and I love the fit out but the food we had was totally bland, expensive, and by the end of the night I was totally fed up hopping up and down to get plates, cutlery etc. because the wait staff seemed to make a point of avoiding eye contact. I'm local and I haven't been back.