A sunny weekend is something to be treasured. Too often, we suffer the cruel irony of being chained to our desks during a sunny working week, only to spend the weekend sloshing through rain puddles and fighting the wind for our umbrellas. This weekend, however, the fates spared us. The sky stretched out endlessly above, a cloudless cerulean dome, and the sun warmed any chill lingering in the air. And what better place to savour the sunshine than on a deck overlooking the water.
The Sailors Club opened only weeks ago, replacing the former Pier restaurant in Rose Bay. The long, narrow nose of its main dining area stretches out over the water, with an adjoining bar area that sticks out on the left.
The deck attached to the bar offers breathtaking views of the bay. The open air, the gentle breezes lifting off the water, and the cheery, fire-engine red coffee cups are enough to rouse the sleepiest head from a weekend slumber.
Moving indoors, the bright, cheery colour scheme continues with candy-striped cushions, canary yellow chairs and a turquoise ceiling. Stools resembling giant spools of rope remind you that this is a club for sailors after all.
We decided to kickstart lunch with a jug of Aperol & Cider Spritz, a combination of Eristoff Vodka, Aperol, The Hills apple cider and pressed orange juice. The sweet, punchy flavour masked the vodka very well, so after a few glasses, we began to feel the need for food.
TSC Three Cut Burger, Lettuce Heart & Caramelized Onion. This was a popular order, judging by the number of plates which sailed by, and the fact that all my dining companions ordered it (besides me). The general feedback was positive, although there were some complaints about the density of the bun. I can only comment on the chips, which I found to be light, salty and delightfully crisp. A great alternative to chunky-cut fries.
Sugar Cured Ocean Trout with Dill Dressing on Brioche Toast. To be perfectly honest, I felt a lump of disappointment rise in my throat when this dish arrived. I'm not sure what I'd been expecting, maybe tendrils of trout curled snugly onto beds of brioche - definitely something with more height. This dish looked a little flat and uninspiring, sort of like when your new furniture arrives in flat-packed boxes and you have to assemble it yourself. It just looked like it had been pulled directly out of a packet and placed on the plate. It did taste good, but nothing to write home about.
Time for dessert. This was Strawberries & Crème Fraiche. I had shied away from it initially, expecting nothing more than a pile of strawberries dolloped with cream, but this was a pleasant surprise. Beautiful presentation - a solid base of chunky-cut fruit, softened with a canopy of cream, topped with razor-thin shards and a dusting of edible flowers. And it tasted good too.
Custard Apple & Banana Sundae. A sight to behold, and a quirky take on the traditional sundae. A great textural mess, with punchy flavours to match.
Poached Quince, Malted Milk & Passionfruit. Amazing. Taste, presentation, texture.
The Sailors Club Tiramisu. I ordered this because the name suggested that it was no ordinary tiramisu, but something I would always remember distinctly as the Sailors Club tiramisu. And it did not disappoint. Yes it looks rather ugly, and I'm not sure many people would order rubble for breakfast. But the taste is something else. Buried underneath that mountain of meringue pieces were soft, moist chunks of coffee sponge, surrounded by swirls of cream and caramel. Deconstructed tiramisu never tasted better.
So if you're searching for somewhere to soak up some rays, hit the deck of The Sailors Club. The beautiful views, good food, and cheery yellow decor are bound to chase the winter blues away.
Until next time.