A post from No Experts Australian Correspondent
I have been meaning to visit Woolloomooloo for quite some time, and finally got the opportunity when a friend invited me to a Bordeaux tasting at the amazingly chic Blue Hotel. The name Woolloomooloo, had always held out a fascination for me. Needless to say 21st century Woolloomooloo bears no resemblance to the outpost I had imagined, instead, this former docklands area has now been re-developed, in a very sympathetic manner.
Manta is one of several top restaurants that line the length of Finger Wharf, housed in the former dockside warehouses, that typified this area. We decided to take advantage of their lunch offer of 2 courses and a glass of wine for $49. As the sun decided to honour us, despite being winter, we elected for an outside table, which offered water views as well as sunshine!
The food was very tasty, with 2 of our party going for the Goats cheese, chive and hazelnut stuffed cannelloni which was deep fried, and delicious. The alternate starter of Prawn cocktail, enlivened with an avocado dip, was superbly fresh! The Sirloin was beautifully done, rare, and accompanied by a divine side order of “Angle Fries” which were topped with shaved parmesan and truffle oil! At $15.50 this one of the most expensive bowls of fries I have ever had, however the amazing taste probably justified the cost. We polished the bowl off, quick smart!
Time did not allow for desert, and we regretfully headed off to an amazing Bordeaux tasting, where the highlight was a 1909 Domaine Sainte Croix Rivesaltes, a partially fortified wine from the South of France. We ended the day laughing, as the gentlemen drawing the prize, bowed to one of our party and offered her the opportunity to pull out a name from the box. She pulled out a name with a flourish, only for her to draw out her husband’s name from the box! Brilliant! The prize a magnum of 2001 Domaine de Chevalier, Classed Growth Pessac Leognan, which was taken home to be laid down! Great day!