No doubt this rib eye steak is good but it is like the Tiger Woods of late.
Sous vide execution is flawless but mojo is lacking bold flavours of chargrilled meat.
I am not a gambler when it comes to casinos.
But every good casino in the world needs hungry gamblers hoping to win a stake off its roulette tables. Or could it be a steak off its steakhouse?
It seems great casinos of the world need that obligatory steakhouse to boost its presence for good food. Win or lose, you get to take it out on that delicious piece of meat with either sheer joy or resigned desolation.
Melbourne’s Crown casino has claimed Sydney celebrity chefs Neil Perry and Guillaume Brahimi to set up signature restaurants. So Sydney’s The Star casino has responded with quirky American star David Chang and Melbourne’s very own celebrity chef Teage Ezard.
A kind invitation from Echo Entertainment Group has got me checking out Sydney casino’s very own steakhouse. And with this blog post, we conclude our coverage of the four signature restaurants at Sydney’s The Star casino ~ BLACK by Ezard, Sokyo, BALLA and Momofuku Seiobo.
BLACK by Ezard, Sydney
It’s big, bold and heavy. And it’s the first thing, apart from the maitre d’ that greets you upon entering.
This signature restaurant comes with a signature piece of furniture ~ a ginormous $12,000 dining table made out of a single tree. Interior designer Paul Kelly’s team found the tree in Oberon near the Blue Mountains in country New South Wales. It was sliced in half and its jagged edges sanded down.
I seldom dine out on my own but this sunny Friday afternoon at the casino seems like the perfect day to do so.
Trying a Negra Modelo from Mexico for the first time, I personally find the flavour of this dark beer a little too strong and bitter for my liking.
I have read quite a bit about how good BLACK’s table bread is.
A small loaf of brioche arrives on a wooden slab with a medallion of unsalted butter and volcanic black salt from the “Friendly Island” of Molokai, the fifth largest of the main islands of Hawaii.
I ditch the butter knife because this loaf is tempting me to tear it open with my fingers.
The brioche is soft and fluffy with buttery goodness but it doesn’t stop me adding a good slab of butter and a sprinkle of the volcanic black salt. This complimentary brioche sets the standard for Sydney restaurants that serve this French pastry as an appetizer.
I feel more at home with a James Boag’s Premium Lager.
Its beautiful balance of malt and hops with a crisp, dry finish makes it one of my favourite beers from Tasmania.
Potato buttered desiree puree
I checked out BLACK’s menu before I came for lunch today. Its ten choices of sides are so tempting, it is a sub-menu on its own.
I feel like ordering three in replacement of the entrees.
Just by its looks, a potato buttered desiree puree topped with chopped chives in a small and rustic copper pot tells me it will be one of the best in Sydney. And it is too.
Mac & cheese three cheese sauce, bacon crumbs
I could not resist the mac & cheese and it arrives in a small copper pan with a cheesy golden brown crust on top.
It is full of cheesy goodness as it is sinful with crispy bacon bits.
To accompany your steak, there is a choice of bernaise, exotic mushroom or green peppercorn with cognac sauce for $4, $5 and $5 respectively.
But I am happy to check out the complimentary sauces, condiments and mustards that come with every steak ~ house-made steak sauce, salsa verde, French Dijon, Hot English and Cafe de Paris butter.
400gm, 300 day grain-fed rib eye Angus
I have been wanting to come to BLACK for three years now since the restaurant first opened in 2011.
This steakhouse looks expensive even from the outside with its signature stone and marble bull heads out front.
But its claim to fame is the steaks ~ individually encassed in vacuum packs and sous vide in a water bath at 55 degrees Celsius for up to 1.5 hours and finishing off on a wood-fired grill to impart chargrill flavours.
Medium rare for this rib eye is an evenly pink inside. Having been sous vide, I was expecting an even more tender steak though it is more so that most steaks I have eaten around town.
Depending on the cut of meat, I enjoy steaks first and foremost for its bold beefy flavours. A bit of chew is fine as long as it’s not leathery.
No doubt this rib eye steak is good but it is like the Tiger Woods of late. Sous vide execution is flawless resulting in tender and succulent meat. But mojo is lacking bold flavours of chargrilled meat.
But the potato buttered desiree puree is rather unforgettable.
So smooth and creamy, I momentarily disregard the amount of butter that comes with each orgasmic mouthful.
I was expecting the restaurant to be busier with punters from the casino and business suits but it is rather quiet for a Friday afternoon.
I’m not complaining because the view of Pyrmont Bay from my table is rather picturesque with the construction of Barangaroo powering along in the background.
The cocktail bar at the front of the restaurant is an elegant space for pre or post dinner drinks.
And the wine list at BLACK is intimidating to say the least. The range of varietals from old to new world wines is extensive and truly a haven for wine lovers.
As for the steaks, I’m not quite convinced by its sous vide method. Perhaps I might order a blue steak the next time because they go straight onto the grill.
But ordering a blue steak might be too easy a call for a restaurant of this calibre. It’s a bit like asking Tiger Woods to play miniature golf with kiddies at their playground.
ChopinandMysaucepan dined courtersy of Echo Entertainment Group and BLACK by Ezard. All prices are for readers’ information only. All views and opinions on this blog post are ours on the day of attendance.
BLACK by Ezard
Pyrmont, New South Wales
Tel:+61 2 9657 9109
Opening hours: Tuesday – Thursday 5.30pm – 9.30pm, Friday 12pm – 2.30pm & 5.30pm – 10pm, Saturday 5.30pm – 10pm, Sunday 12pm – 2.30pm, 5.30pm – 9.30pm. Closed on Monday.