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Published May 10th 2016
Fancy Seasonal Bistro Lunch in Sydney CBD
I love a good fine-dining brunch with an affordable cafe price tag, so I am always on the lookout for Sydney´s best-value gourmet brunch spots, and after many trials and errors, I think this is a pretty special place to visit.
The food presentation and the quality of ingredients used at Abode Bistro & Bar is easily one of the best brunch restaurants I have visited this year.
Abode is an upscale elegant dining sanctuary with welcoming designer light-filled interiors. It offers a distinctive gourmet menu with an innovative twist.
We had a nice sleep-in on this sunny weekend and before starting our afternoon activities; our stomach needed urgent attention first. We felt like dining at a restaurant and luckily, my friend have been to Abode before and she highly recommended it.
The restaurant is located on Day Street, Parkloyal Hotel at Darling Harbour. The restaurant's interior looks glamorous and luxurious with natural earthy tones against the striking wallpaper and lattice works. The elegant space is paired with clean white furnishings and it creates a sophisticated dining atmosphere. I really like a beautiful light-filled interior as it sets the dining mood immediately.
The menu is clearly Modern Australian, and it is made up of fresh, seasonal ingredients. Abode changes their menu frequently so there is always a surprise element whenever you visit.
The modern decor of the restaurant is a wonderfully aesthetic
While my friend settled comfortably into a plush chair, I was distracted by the fabulous High Tea selections from the adjourning tables. I wanted to try that but unfortunately we were required to give advance notice for High Tea. Reluctantly, I turned my attention back to brunch menus.
As the menu consisted of superb quality with very distinctive descriptions, we were spoiled with choices. I noticed there was an extensive gluten-free, as well as many vegetarian options. Our initial intention was to have a 'light lunch', but we ended up ordering 5 exceptionally delicious entrees to share.
Citrus Cured Salmon (GF) $18 (Edamame two ways, shaved radish, red cabbage, with citrus dressing)
We started with citrus cured salmon served with edamame, radish red cabbage and citrus dressing. This dish looked like a million dollars! It also looked incredibly elegant, and it tasted really light and refreshing. It was such an easy dish to finish on my own.
I was curious about this braised octopus dish and it was a pleasant surprise when I saw satiny squid ink lasagne sheets layered loosely between tender octopus pieces. No creamy bechamel cheese sauce was used, instead it was saturated with a refreshing tangy tomato salsa sauce.
This was not your conventional baked lasagna. It was a blissful dish and I highly recommended this delicate dish at Abode.
Salt Baked Celeriac (GF) $18 Sweet and sour dressing, crushed hazelnuts and house-made ricotta
The salt baked celeriac salad was an interesting vegetarian dish and while the celeriac could had a bit more seasoning, it was a tasty gluten-free dish with an interesting combination of flavours that you would not normally expect.
Black Squid $18 (Ink battered squid, coriander and mint, served with herb aioli)
The black squid was my least favorite dish of the day. The squid was dipped in a ink batter and deep fried to 'coal black'. It was lightly dressed with mints and a herb aioli dressing. Whilst I admired the creativity and the interesting combination of flavour, it was actually a very dense dish to have. The ink batter was very thick and I could not really taste the tenderness of the squid.
Crispy Chicken Wings $14 (Marinated in coriander and pepper, served with chilli mayo)
We absolutely loved these crispy chicken wings! These were absolutely superb, probably the best in Sydney. I know that was a bold claim but they were mouth-watering delicious.
It was a generous basket serving size, and it came with a bowl of chilli mayo for dipping. Once we started, we literally could not stop until we finished the whole basket. They were finger-licking good and we kept asking ourselves 'Where have you been all my life'!
Though we were full from all the 5 entrees, we still managed to find room for dessert. My friend rarely resists a crème brulee after a meal, so we decided to share one.
Abode's Crème Brûlée Terrine ($15)
Abode's cream brulee was an appetising dessert. It was deliciously filled with almond sponge, topped with flaky puff pastry and served with pomegranate gel. Once my friend had a taste, her beaming smiles told us the verdict.
All dishes we ordered were flavour-driven and the plating presentations were artistic, modern and interesting. We were visually enticed with all dishes.
The restaurant is beautifully set-up, and it does not feel crowded or too noisy. This is a perfect catch up venue with your girlfriends and have artful light meals or decant high tea at the same time.
Abode Bistro & Bar also offers a Six Course Tasting Menu for only $65. That has got to be the most economical tasting menu in Sydney! However, I would return just for those crispy chicken wings.