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Silvereye – Chippendale

The silvereye is a minute, omnivorous bird native to Australia and New Zealand. It’s also the name of the fine dining restaurant that has opened in the newly renovated Old Clare Hotel.The head chef is Sam Miller, who was the sous chef at Noma and Faviken (I was watching a food documentary that featured Noma and Sam Miller popped up in a segment!). It’s no surprise the 17 course degustation has a strong focuses on fresh, local produce. For those with a smaller appetite, there is a Short course of 12 dishes for you.

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Cafe Oratnek – Redfern

Walking into Cafe Oratnek feels like you’re visiting a friend’s place (a talented friend who can cook up a storm). The bright and homely space is a welcome change from the dimly lit interiors of a lot of hip cafes.  
The chef and owner of Cafe Oratnek is Kenny Takayama, he was previously the head chef of Bills and now he’s opened the cafe of his dreams. Find out what the menu is like in my video below! 

Recommended dishes: Katsu Pork Sandwich
Atmosphere: Bright and homely cafe
Price: $40 for 2 people
Stars: โ˜†
One star means good, two means very good, three is excellent and four is absolutely incredible culinary experience.
This post was based on an independently paid visit.

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Boscage – Surry Hills

Boscage is a modern cafe that’s tucked away amongst a block of apartments in Surry Hills.

The cafe has outdoor seating, an open kitchen and a sun drenched dining area at the back. Stare out of the floor to ceiling windows for some people watching while you sip on your choice of caffeine. I picked a cappuccino ($3.50) as my go to cold drip was not on the menu (first world problems I know but it’s almost an unspoken rule for Surry Hills cafe to have cold drip).

My Gruyere scrambled eggs ($18) is a generous golden heap that’s plated with a mushroom and some kale. Whilst the flavour was there, the eggs needed more Gruyere (you can never have enough cheese).

The Chorizo Scotch egg ($18) could certainly be Boscage’s signature dish, the runny yolk is nestled on a pile of braised beans and a rather acidic herb salad.

Although the cafe has only been opened for a month or so, Boscage has potential to be another local hotspot after it irons out a few kinks (staff were forgetting orders).

Recommended dishes: Chorizo Scotch egg & Gruyere scrambled egg
Atmosphere: Sunny, relaxing vibes
Price: $40 for 2 people
Stars: โ˜†
One star means good, two means very good, three is excellent and four is absolutely incredible culinary experience.
This post was based on an independently paid visit.

Boscage
15/425 Bourke Street 
Surry Hills
Tel: +61 (2) 9357 3427

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Orto Trading Co. – Surry Hills

Orto Trading Co. is a mix of rustic and chic. The cafe offers all day brunch with coffee, cocktails and juices. There’s a sunny courtyard out front perfect for getting some vitamin D while sipping on a cappuccino (perhaps nursing a Friday night hangover).

Bubble and Squeak $17

Their brunch menu is an eclectic array of traditional dishes like Baked Eggs to the more unique options such as the Hotdog or the Southern Fried Chicken Benni.

My Bubble and Squeak features a duck egg paired with brussels sprouts, chestnuts and jerusalem artichoke. The bubble (that golden brown blob at the top of the photo, made out of potato) is pillowy on the inside while maintaining a nice crust on the outside. ML’s Hash is a generous stack of Berkshire ham, tomato, avocado, rocket and asparagus – topped with a perfectly poached egg.

Hash $16

A nice selection of freshly made juices and smoothies are on offer at Orto Trading Co. My Green Apple, Cucumber, Lime and Mint juice was particularly refreshing – the perfect accompaniment to my heavy brunch.

Service was a mixed bag as the staff tried to manage the large Saturday brunch crowd as well as the takeaway line.

Green Apple, Cucumber, Lime and Mint $7
Good: Varied brunch menu, fresh juices 
Bad: Service was hit and miss  
Perfect for: Lazy Sunday brunch, hangover cure   
Price: $$
This post was based on an independently paid visit.
38 Waterloo Street
Surry Hills
Tel: +61 431 212 453

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Haven: Tailoring Coffee Joyously – Surry Hills

Haven is the latest addition to the Surry Hills Cafe scene and they certainly stand up to the standards. Find out what’s on their Weekend Menu of Rustic Elegance!

You know a cafe is serious about their coffee when their sugar bowl encourages you to NOT put sugar in your drink! I stopped putting sugar in my coffee a long time ago because I realised how complex the taste of coffee is when it’s not drowning in sweetness!
Anyway I digress, L and I popped into Haven on a rainy day. The cafe has a very bright and open layout with plenty of seats. It’s super convenient as it’s located right opposite the Chalmers Street exit of Central Station.
Prana Chai Latte

 My cold drip came in an exquisitely detailed glass jar, accompanied by a small bowl of cacao nibs! The coffee was certainly tailored joyously (it’s their slogan) and tasted crisp and clean. The addition of the nibs really elevated the coffee experience. To top it off, there’s an information card that details the origin of the coffee, where it was roasted as well as tasting notes.

Spot the tamper in their logo!
Roasted in my 2nd home, Taiwan!
The Croque Monsieur ($14) comes with a side of kale salad. There’s something deliciously magical about melted Gruyere cheese, ham and thick toast. This was my first time eating kale and I’m quite the fan now! 
Hulk Smash!
L’s smashed her way through the Smashed Eggs ($16). The salsa verde worked really well with the avocado, adding a fresh element to the dish.
Will I Return? 
Yes! Haven is a really conveniently located haven for food and tailored coffee. 
QOTD: How do you like your coffee? Let me know in the comments below!

Haven on Urbanspoon

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Paramount Coffee Project – Surry Hills

Paramount Coffee Project is located in the foyer of the Paramount Pictures Building, which makes sense considering their coffees are epic and their food is picture perfect.


My 1st visit to PCP was very memorable due to the massive Crab Po Boy and the unique coffee. So I recommended the Crab Po Boy to my friend, JL, without hesitation. I was drawn to the Black Pudding due to my trip last year to London, where I had the chance to try the hearty dish. When our dishes arrives, I was taken back by how small the Crab Po Boy looked, when I had it a year ago it was quite a generous serving. My Black Pudding was beautifully plated, the sunny side duck egg was encircled by the black pudding, sprigs of watercress, slices of radish and a bacon/tomato relish. Although the portion was on the smaller side, I found myself very satisfied. It would have been good if a slice of toast was included.
When I saw the Coffee Slushy on the menu, I knew I had to try it. I mean slushy + coffee is surely a good combination. The drink was cool and refreshing, the perfect way to have my daily caffeine intake on a sunny day. JL decided on the pomegranate soda, which was a light fizzy drink with the pomegranate flavour permeating throughout. 
Will I Return? 
Yes. I would love to try their extensive coffee range and other dishes. However, I’ll pass on the Crab Po Boy.
QOTD: Do you care about serving size? Let me know in the comments below!

The Paramount Coffee Project on Urbanspoon

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Tasty Love

Oh, your sweet juicy 
buns. Soft but firm
White freckles dot your face
I just want to grip you with both hands
and stare into your vibrant insides
the reds, greens and yellows
Beyond your brown skin
I can see the raw pinkness inside
My lips long for your sauciness
Although our time is always short
I never forget your sweet aroma
I love you, burger. Nom

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Blacksmith – Surry Hills

Both the food and decor of Blacksmith can be summed up as rustic. All throughout the cafe you will find a pastiche of metal, wooden and industrial materials. Even the menus look as if they were crafted by a blacksmith.

Being a cold drip lover, I thought I’ve seen all the quirky ways the beverage can be served but Blacksmith certainly surprised me with the double beaker arrangement. Yes, you sip your cold drip ($5.50) from the little teeny weeny beaker! If you prefer your coffee hot, Blacksmith has your standard drinks. L gave the chai latte a thumbs up.
The menu has all the typical brunch items but with a slight twist. My Smithy Breakfast Burger ($15.50) is a delicious mess of bacon, a fried egg, a heap of pickled slaw and beetroot relish. L’s chorizo eggs is lot less messier to eat as it comes in a Blacksmith branded copper saucepan. The generous servings of chorizo, scrambled eggs, avocado and asparagus comes with two slices of sour dough. 
Blacksmith will certainly become the next brunch hotspot, so get in quick before lines start forming.  
Will I Return?
Yes! Blacksmith is one cool cafe that’s convenient and not crowded (yet).     
QOTD
Are you a fan of rustic decor? Let me know in the comments below!

Blacksmith Cafe & Bakery on Urbanspoon

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Devon Cafe – Surry Hills

The last time I visited Devon Cafe was over a year ago, I remember having delicious food and great coffee. A year later, the staff at Devon are still keeping up the good work. On this visit, I was meeting up with my friend, BS, for a quick catch up over lunch. 

As usual, I went with the cold drip (Market Price) for my drink while BS picked the mocha ($4). As for the food, I opted for Breakfast with the Sakuma’s ($24.50) and BS chose the Eggs Blini ($19.50).

The Eggs Blini ($19.50) starts with a buckwheat blini as the base. Next we have several slices of cured king salmon, a poached egg and a few pieces asparagus. Finally the Maltaise sauce covers the entire stack.

I don’t know who the Sakuma’s are but I would love to have breakfast with them everyday! Breakfast with the Sakuma’s ($24.50) features a generous slab of miso grilled king salmon, a smoked eel croquette, one 63′ egg, a refreshing radish petit salad and three dollops of kewpie mayonnaise. 
Will I Return?
Yes! I can always rely on Devon for good food and coffee.
QOTD: Have you been to Devon Cafe? How was it? Let me know in the comments below!

Devon Cafe on Urbanspoon