Friday, March 9, 2012
26. Restaurant Review: Bay Tinh
Lord knows getting around Sydney is tough enough but with the advent of cab to curb heels, show me a woman that say's 'I'd love to walk to dinner in my new Louboutin's' and I'll show you a liar, a drunk or a gold digger and lord knows there's plenty of those in Sydney.
The 'arkward shoe' has alot to answer for and for me this means hitting up some of Sydney's finest diners because they happen to be within walking distance of my Eastern Suburbs bubble. However as pleasurable as flashy warehouse conversions may be, it only takes a weekend of this to realise I'm living a champagne lifestyle on a very beer-like budget and having to wait two hours for a table .. at the bar .. for a kebab.
There's an alternate. An adventure. And a surprise at the end. Located over the bridge, Bay Tinh in Sydney's Crow's Nest is surprisingly a 20 minute drive to get to in peak hour traffic from Elizabeth Bay and presumably a nifty 15 minute scoot in non-peak hour traffic.
Bookings are accepted and BYO wine, as the french would say 'Tres Bon'. Did you know Vietnam was a French colony until 1954? Neither did I but as my date and I settle into our table and a lovely bottle of The Pawn 11' Pinos Gris ($26), a survey of the menu proves more than your typical Vietnamese type fare but one weighing heavily on the influences of French Imperialism.
Crispy Pancake gone wrong can be a sordid affair but our Crispy Pancake ($12.90) is both light, lace thin and full of crunch and munch. Stuffed Dried Mushrooms ($12) filled with prawn paste sit plump on a bed of cabbage accompanied by a delectable pool of hot oyster sauce.
The labour intensity of a Galantine of Chicken ($8.50) far outweighs this princely price-point. The bird; de-boned and stuffed with a mixture of pork and spice is so delicious it's hard to say where the succulent juices end and my drool starts. It's a good thing I'm able to pull myself together before the piece de resistance. Six Little Rice Cakes ($10.50) like wafer crisp cups each filled with a creamy prawn and coconut milk centre.
I didn't lie about the surprise as in our case we found it at the end. Past the kitchen Bay Tinh's main dining space opens out onto a plush cushion covered boudoir. With it's own tapas style menu and sommelier wine recommendations for each item listed, the mind boggles at what other experiences may be had, at this place that serves heaven on a plate and leaves room to buy more 'arkward shoes'.
Written by A L F I E A N D E L L E for Daily Gloss