|Lime curd and coconut ice cream flavoured desert with garnishing of toasted coconut. Photo credit - Mr. J.W. Khoo|
We were ushered into the inner chambers. Our on-line booking was deftly recognised. End of week, there was relaxed chatter. It was first floor and we could see the ground lobby through the glass enclosure. The name of the restaurant evokes the Big Apple, of course. The American site reminds one of mansions, cocktails, connections to farms and the Old World. I was half-thinking of Kransky sausages, cold beer and a refuge from the world outside - yes, they do have that every Thursday evening, with the late night shopping hours in Sydney. In fact, every week night has a theme at Bowery lane.
|The classic Nutella Cheesecake with raspberries and vanilla bean ice cream. Photo Credit - Mr. J. W. Khoo.|
It was a rainy day, the sun had gone hiding and it was windy outside. Inside, it was so different. I had inadvertently dropped my knife. Oh yes, JW and I had already started our pre-meal cocktails.
The cutlery knife slooshed gently through to the carpet. The lady staff member offered a replacement fast, she made me and my mate feel relaxed and had a gentle sense of humour. She transformed the air, made me loosen up and forget about excesses of the past week. The wait staff were busy but never lacked the attentive stance of responding quickly and engaging with diners in a natural way. When I was stalling and had a mind block over my choice of mains, they were patient. Our orders came professionally on a timely basis. Refreshingly appreciated! Just like Hershey's cookies and cream milkshake, which is actually on the menu.
|Hickory smoked salmon salad, with avocado, hazelnut, cucumber, radish, iceberg and sesame vinaigrette.|
For mains, JW had the grilled fish, a Hiramasa Kingfish served with a sherry infused vinaigrette, Tahini, charred corn, baby leeks and pea shoots. I was refreshed by my Hickory smoked salmon salad. The fresh produce, seasonal ingredients and emphasis on local sourcing showed through in its menu choices. Dessert time saw us select a more Asian influenced creation with lime and coconut, balanced by a rather tempting Nutella cheesecake.
The drinks reflect more of the late 19th century New York with ciders, ale. lagers and hop hog.
Mineral water served is Capi's. The wine selection is more local, with selections from nearby New Zealand, but I noticed a Rosso Fresco Merlot and Shiraz from New York State. and a Gloria Ferrer sparkling Blanc de Noir from Sonoma, California.
Stand outs for their catering options include mini jars of Bircher muesli, served with fruit compote and toasted coconut flakes; the filo pastry stuffed with pumpkin and feta; fritattas of various types; and sliders with Gruyere, double smoked leg ham and Heirloom tomatoes. And they have conference capability as well.
Other offerings that caught my eye for on-site dining are the San Danielle Proscuitto; the king prawn Pappardelle; the dessert wines; the Scouts Breakfast, with poached egg, goat's cheese, Parmesan crumbs, roast potatoes and crispy Proscuitto; the tuna Carpaccio, with grapefruit pickled cucumber and smashed avocado; and the smoked BBQ glazed Chix wings.
Will I be back? Yes, first thing on Monday evening, for a NYC cheeseburger and a Brooklyn beer. Later in the week, perhaps those Mango Croquettes, with touches of fried basil and Harissa Aioli.
The Bowery Lane
Shop 1, Level 4
No 1 O'Connell Street
Wynyard Banking District
Open every day from 7am till late weekdays; Saturdays open from 5pm and closed on Sundays.
Approach from Circular Quay or Hunter Street
Atmosphere - relaxed and diverse, with business and social groups
Sit down section and a separate cafe section for takeaway
Biggest positive point - Attention to detail
Links - www.bowerylane.com.au