Dinner at Luxe Woollahra
Everybody knows that my favourite places to eat involve good coffee and house baked bread. These are the types of cafes and bakeries that open at the crack of dawn for breakfast and close for the day just after lunch. But what does that mean for Dinner? In a Mattel-plastic world of bikini bodies and tiny appetites, we’d all be so full after lunch, that dinner would be null and void. Considering that’s not the world I want to live in, I always imagine what my beloved bakery cafes could do if they regularly opened for dinner.
Then this happened.
Luxe at Woollahra has officially opened the doors for dinner service, and recently, Kevin and I stopped in for a meal that we’re still talking about. Nestled in a stylish neighbourhood, this Luxe location boasts indoor and out door seating that can cater to both large and intimate groups. Exactly the kind of place you’d want to go on a first date; relaxing ambiance, low lighting, casual-cool vibe, and a super impressive dinner menu that did not disappoint.
After being seated in the outdoor courtyard, we started with some nibbles: Marinated olives ($5), Shichimi Cashew nuts ($5), and delicious sourdough with Pepe Saya butter. Once we were kindly warned to pace ourselves, it took all of our self-control to stop at just once piece of bread – my kryptonite. Especially when this bad boy landed on our table. More than just cheese on toast, Welsh Rarebit is the ultimate fit for the title 'dude food'. Bread, cheese, stout and generous hit of Worcestershire, this little entrée packed a big flavour punch. Not for the faint of heart, or the clean eaters. #notrawforsure
Next up was a decent serving of perfectly battered and fried, Salt and Pepper Calamari, served with Lemon Aioli ($18). One of our favourite starters to share, Kevin commented on how the calamari was cooked to perfection. I always find that this dish can be a hit or miss in most places, especially because I'm a bit of a salt sook - meaning, for me and my tastebuds, there is a very fine line between under salted, and over salted. These were perfectly crispy, perfectly seasoned and the calamari was still tender to the bite.
Just as we started to feel a little tummy room open up, we were given the news that another entrée would be hitting our table. Pazolo Blanco, Mexican Chicken and White Corn Broth ($14) was served to both Kevin and I, with a side dish of fresh coriander, lime, radish and jalepenos. Wholesome, honest and down to earth flavours, this soup took me back to San Francisco Circa 2010, where I tasted what I then thought was the best thing since my mum's chicken soup. Until now. This was hands down, the best part of my experience at Luxe, and I know that it won't be long before we're back, just for this soup! Warming and healthy, I completely forgot the fact that two more courses were yet to be served, and finished every last grounding spoonful.
About 20 minutes later, we braced ourselves for the main course. For the husband, and in true Kevin fashion, Grass Fed Filet Steak, Shoestring Fries and Bearnaise ($34). For me, Grilled Lobster with Saffron Butter and fries ($31).
I am married to a lover of steak cooked to medium rare perfection, with a sound appreciation of a good glass of grape juice to suit. Kevin enjoyed his main in silence. Not a single word was spoken, and when I asked "how is it?", a muffled 'ridiculous' was all I got. Kevin worked his way through his plate and eventual made his way to mine.
That's right. A bakery opens for dinner, and serves lobster with saffron butter. This tail was quite large and was packed full of sweet morsels of lobster meat, made all the tastier by a generous lashing of saffron butter. I gave the tail a good coating of fresh lemon juice and made my way through half of it, sneaking in a delicious french fry between bites. It was a bittersweet moment when I realised why I was so full - that soup. No problem though, Kevin took one for the team, and offered much needed support by finishing the lobster. It's a hard life for him, really it is.
With mains served and enjoyed, we finally sat back and asked ourselves if there was any way we could sample a dessert. Truthfully speaking, there was no more room left to indulge. I thought that, at most, a coffee would be the ultimate end to the meal, especially because I knew I could order a latte made with almond milk. But we were convinced by a waiter who suggested we share the Tahini Biscuit and Strawberry Ice Cream Sandwich ($12) - sweet, rich, and definitely enough for both of us to share. We sipped on our coffees and pulled away at the gorgeous persian fairy floss that sat atop the dessert. Delicately flavoured, it dissolved away to sweet nothing, as if to tempt us into eating more of the crumbly cookie hiding underneath it.
Visit Luxe Woollahra Queens Court 118 Queen Street Woollahra NSW 2025 Breakfast and lunch 7 days a week from 7AM Light menu between 3PM and 6PM Dinner Service Monday to Friday 6pm till late luxesydney.com.au
Kevin and Viola of Project Sweet Stuff dined as guests of Luxe Woollahra