I like a bit of theatre with my food – and it doesn’t get much more theatrical than gueridon, the art of finishing and plating dishes tableside! Crêpes Suzette and steak Diane come immediately to mind, but there are many other possibilities as these restaurants show. I’m pleased to see a bit of a gueridon renaissance in Sydney, at all levels of dining, and not just among the Frenchies.
I love pesto’s vivid greenness and fresh flavour – but most of all I love its aroma, especially when the basil is crushed in a huge marble mortar right beside me and mixed with olive oil, garlic, pecorino and a drizzle of pasta cooking water, before being tossed through freshly-made pasta.
Bert’s Bar & Brasserie, Newport
Merivale’s light-filled northern beaches outpost has a relaxed but exciting atmosphere, like a seaside holiday in a grand hotel from an earlier age. Spanking fresh seafood is served wonderfully unadorned, and having a whole flatfish (flounder or turbot) filleted and served tableside adds a wonderful sense of theatre.
Black-aproned waiters deftly silver serve zucchini flowers and other antipasto in this subterranean shrine to old-school Italian. But the real theatre is steak tartare mixed tableside to your specifications, a taste offered to ensure the seasoning is just right before it’s served with the ultimate indulgence – excellent hot chips!
Holiday on the Italian Riviera without leaving Sydney at this seafood-focused restaurant overlooking Middle Harbour. Tableside service adds a touch of fun theatre, from charcoal-grilled bugs wrapped in piadina to Murray cod baked in lemon leaves and salt crust. The theatre continues at the awesome gelato bar where every creation is a work of art!
The dishes in this bustling restaurant are a cut far above Sydney’s normal Tex-Mex offerings … but for me it’s all about the chunky, creamy, tangy guacamole mixed at the table in a stone mortar, served with plantain chips and so perfect with a margarita!
Updated 27 Oct 2022