My friend Amanda from Auckland recently visited Sydney for a series of concerts featuring her favourite band, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. We took the opportunity to catch up over an excellent meal at Bourke St Bakery After Hours with our significant others, following an extremely favourable review from Not Quite Nigella.
We ordered as couples, and I got the opportunity to try:
- Sausage Stuffed Eggplant, Smoked Mozzarella
- Chicken, Rabbit & Duck Terrine, Brioche, Sweet & Sour Onions
- La Raclette with Baby Potatoes and Pickled Cucumber with Salami
- Frenchy Duck Salad
- Flourless Chocolate Sponge, Passionfruit Mousse, Praline, Meringue
We started with a house-made lemonade each which was super refreshing and had a nice tang to it. Most places fall into the trap of making their lemonade too sweet, which defeats the purpose of making a drink out of sour lemons!
The terrine arrived next, and had some really beautiful subtle flavours in it. Although it was a three-meat terrine, it still felt remarkably light, especially when accompanied by the super-fluffy and soft brioche. Following it with the stuffed eggplant was excellent, as the strong Mediterranean tomato-based flavours and spices of the eggplant was a really nice contrast to the simpler terrine.
The raclette was next up – it was a super generous serving of beautifully roasted baby potatoes with crispy skin and a soft inside, topped with delicious melted cheese and semi-spicy salami on the side. I’d only recommend ordering the potatoes if there are a few people to help polish them off, otherwise it’s too much for just a couple!
The duck salad was also a real surprise, not only with the crispy duck throughout, but also random bursts of intense flavour if you managed to get some pate in your serving. The pate really took the salad to the next level, from a simple salad to an explosion of flavour in your mouth.
The dessert was a surprise – it sounds so elaborate on the menu (sponge, mousse, praline AND meringue?) that you expect a work of art to appear in front of you. Instead you get a nondescript little cube of meringue…that really shocks the senses when you cut it open and eat it. The different layers of the dessert inside are truly amazing, and the flavours combined really create a sweet sensation in your mouth.
Overall, I rate Bourke St Bakery After Hours an 8 out of 10.
It’s got a lovely atmosphere – casual, cheery and chatty which makes it the perfect place to catch up with a friend. You’re also guaranteed a pretty top-notch meal, and the opportunity to really try a few different things on the menu as some of the servings of other dishes are quite small. We were even sent on our way after our meal with a few complimentary leftover loaves of bread from that day’s bakery trade…a really nice touch!