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restaurants guide


The Bridge Room
Modern


Address :
www.whereis.com.au
44 Bridge Street
Sydney  NSW
Phone : 02 9247 7000 
Fax : 02 9247 7007 
Email : info@thebridgeroom.com.au
Web-site : www.thebridgeroom.com.au
Opening times : Lunch: Tuesday - Friday from noon
Dinner: Tuesday - Saturday from 6pm
Cards :
AE DC MC V Eftpos 
Licensing : Licensed
Seats : 66
Cost range :
$100 (per head for 3 courses plus coffee)
Restaurant rating :
18/20

REVIEW:
The Bridge Room is a quietly understated restaurant in a simply decorated room where it's all about the food. Influences are varied, produce high quality and cooked very assured, resulting in some of Sydney's best dishes, presented beautifully. Charming, caring service adds to the overall experience.

WINE : Doesn't try to wow (or distract) with a huge list, the selection is very smart and varied with some very good drinking available.





INVITE ME - I'M GOOD LUCK!

The day before Joel Robuchon gained his third star for Jamin I dined at his restaurant and thought it the best meal I'd had in my life to that time (it remains one of my finest culinary memories). The week before Alain Ducasse gained the first of his three stars I dined in his restaurant. Ditto Guy Savoy and Pierre Gagnaire.

Last week I returned to The Bridge Room for the first time in ages.
I'd had lovely meals there before and jumped at the chance when a friend gave me my choice of restaurants. It's a simple but elegant dining room filled with light from the high-set windows where stunning floral arrangements add a splash of colour to the muted timber and beige. The evening brings the focus all inside but staff are warm and helpful making either sitting equally inviting.

There's no enforced degustation menu that makes it easy on the kitchen here, but an enticing menu that allowed us to choose and mix enough dishes to match any degustation, and staff facilitated our penchant for staggering and sharing each dish.

A steamed scallop pudding set the bar for dishes to come with its Chinois-influence of pork and mushroom condiments: pretty on the plate and all components adding to a cohesive whole. Asian influences appear in the menu but with creative restraint, and the seasons are honoured, not just given lip service, as is too often the case even in good restaurants. Spanner crab with asparagus & artichoke butter, then Murray Cod with black vinegar, soy & rock kelp show the strength of chef Ross Lusted's deft touch with seafood ý the main ingredient stars as it should, the rest enhancing the whole.

Ash-grilled duck is matched with burnt orange sauce in a nod to the classics of French cuisine but fancied up with white carrot puree, pine syrup & mustard fruits. Duck often fails due to variable channels of supply but this was exemplary.

Sweets don't falter here with a stunning crýme brulee dish under the name of ýburnt caramel cream, candied Packham pear saladý and a ýset chocolate, berries, cocoa crackerý. Beautiful craft, decadent sweets!

The wine list mixes up Australian and internationals, mostly French, with some decent value drinking. No bible-sized tome, there is ample variation and choice - a harder task for a shorter list, so bravo to the sommelier. It's great to see in-form Charles Heidsieck by the glass rather than more popularist sparklings that perform poorly. A 2009 Santenay Champs Claude from Lucien Muzard sang a sweet duet with the duck.

There's a sense of graciousness that sets very fine restaurants apart. Helpful but not intrusive staff, not butting into conversations inferring the food is more important than you. A room that makes you feel cocooned without being crowded. And food that shines with both produce and creativity. The Bridge Room has all that. I may not agree with a number of the hat ratings of the GFG but The Bridge Room deserves its place at the top.

I often visited France to ski, buy wine and eat at the time of year Michelin came out, and was always searching out the up-and-comers, so it's no real surprise that I'd pre-empt a Michelin promotion. But I'll still claim I'm good luck.

September 2015  
Winecall