Well, the Crave Sydney Food Festival was actually quite awhile ago, in October, but such is the state of my blog that I’m only so fast…
I didn’t end up going to many of Crave’s Let’s Do Lunch series, as I found the price to be rather prohibitive for what you get (esp as I kept going to expensive dinners…bad habit), but I still went to a couple. Ash St Cellar hosted one of them.
For Let’s Do Lunch, you get a special main and a glass of wine, either red or white. Eh, why not? As Ash St Cellar had ocean trout. I knew what I was having for lunch!
Name: Ash St Cellar
Date Visited: 11/10/2012
Address: 1 Ash St, Sydney 2000
Go-to dish: well I’ve only actually tried one so…
I caught up with a long-time-no-see mate for this lunch, so I figured shelling out $38 (the fixed price for all Crave let’s do lunches) is worth it. Well, it actually really isn’t, but Crave isn’t really about value. Wow what a redundant sentence :S
The decor is quite nice though – as seen in the feature photo and below. I always like it when they make the wines part of the decor of the restaurant. It never fails to impress!
The wine we got (which I was so smart to not take a picture of) was a sparkling white, which really just tasted like champagne. I’m not a wine buff, but considering how if you can’t taste the difference but a wine critic can – why bother? As such, it was relegated to “not so important”, while the star was presented in front of us.
Ohhhh now that’s a healthy portion of fillet. Yum. There’s probably 200g+ there, which, while not wholly filling, can keep the stomach busy until the late arvo.
Ocean trout is generally considered the superior brother to salmon, due to its fuller, fattier flavour. It’s like a beefed up salmon fillet hoooooo boy.
It tasted yum – the skin was a bit tough – I basically couldn’t cut it in the same strokes as the fish itself. That didn’t matter though; cut up separately and had with the fish has the same great taste. LOVE crispy fish skin if it’s cooked well. The seasoning for it is also pretty good – none too salty, but a bit inconsistent.
The fish itself is soft and breaks apart easily. Perhaps too easily – I found myself using the fork as a spoon more often than not, which was a bit awkward, but acceptable given its decent flavour. It didn’t taste any better than god salmon though.
The escalivada (red peppers, tomatoes, and eggplants all grilled in hot ashes) tasted great and complemented the fish well. It was dearly welcomed, as the fish’s texture gets boring after none too long. That aioli provided the final, guilty touch of yum, but wasn’t actually necessary as the escalivada worked fine in this regard. Too rich!
Overall, it’s a great first taste of the place, and I’d love to see what other foods they’ve got on offer.
Remember folks, this is an entrée review, so don’t take the score too seriously – I’m really only giving one for completion’s sake. By no means is this an opinion of the restaurant on a wider level.
The Good: decent hunk of fish, a nicely decorated restaurant
The Bad: the fish, while good, is not outstanding. Prices for its food don’t seem to be that cheap for what you get…
I give Ash St Cellar a grand total of seven Caesars out of ten – 7/10