Knowing that I was having more refined dining for dinner, I decided to do something quick and casual for lunch. The waterfront was filled with cafes touting various lunch specials but one caught my eye with a $20 chicken parm meal with a beer – sold. The rain had stopped with the sun starting to peek through so I opted to sit outside and do some prime people watching.
Not expecting much given the price, I was pleasantly surprised how good it was – the basil leaves mixed in with the sauce was a nice touch – and ditto the full pint was of a very tasty local dark ale. Now refueled, I decided to continue exploring the harbor – Darling Harbour to be precise.
The harbor was filled with a mix of workers on their lunch break; tourists milling about; and joggers who pushed their way through any gaps they could on the path. The weather was definitely nicer now so that made me want to continue my journey past the harbor into the section known as Bangaroo.
At the end was a very nice preserve and park, filled with trails and nature paths which I’m sure are filled with people during nice weather. I continued past the park to the wharf, which had become a center point for the tech scene in Sydney as well as whatever this was.
As I came around the corner, there was the Sydney Bridge, now probably best known for the Sydney Bridge Walk, which was something I had zero desire to do but from the ground, it was an impressive bridge.
In the distance, I could see probably the most famous landmark of the city, the Sydney Opera House. As I continued along the waterfront, it came into better focus.
I had heard about an area called The Rocks, so I was curious to see what exactly it looked like. Essentially the birthplace of modern Sydney, it had now been transformed into a posh market and shopping area with still a bit of its roots in the various alleys (called laneways) as well as supposedly the city’s oldest pub.
After 7 miles and many, many steps in the ol Health app on my iPhone, I was beat so I headed back to the hotel for some rest. In what seemed like only a few minutes later, it was dinner time. The Bar Liberty folks had recommended a fellow wine bar in a nearby part of town called Surry Hills. Giving my feet a rest, I opted for an Uber to get to my destination – Bar Copains.
Comprised of only a handful of tables, I took a seat at the bar, next to a couple who were trying almost every dish on the menu for her birthday – my kind of people. I was curious about the Australian prosecco so I ordered that along with a local scallop with Cafe du Paris butter (basically an herbed compound butter.
I’m usually not a fan of prosecco but this was a nice version of it – light and crisp with a surprising amount of flavor. It paired very nicely with the small but very tasty scallop.
I chatted with the owner about how I had been relatively disappointed with the Australian pinot noirs so he suggested I try one they were featuring, which was a bit more robust. For my main course, I chose the pappardelle with lamb ragu and rosemary, which the couple at the bar noted was a highlight for them so far. The wine was a marked improvement and indeed was a lot more robust than the previous ones I had tried. It complemented the very rich and delicious lamb ragu in the pappardelle – a great dish. So good in fact I forgot to take a pic of it until about half way done. Whoops.
I opted not to get a third glass, even though Australian liquor rules mean the pours are smaller than in the States. I decided to test out the metro system, which turned out to be very quick and simple trip back to my hotel. Tomorrow I’d be going a bit off script letting my local friend take the wheel for a change. That means blogging over the next couple of days will be a bit more sparse than usual but we’ll see how it all unfolds.