I think I did pretty well this Chinese new year. I didn’t get any red envelopes (NB: being Chinese would help…) but I did make a point of eating as many dumplings as I could in two weeks (Hong Kong style at Nine Dragons, Shanghai at Din Tai Fung, and North-Western at Sea Bay) and finishing with a midnight feast at BBQ King. Plus using the sheep, ram AND goat emoji in my instagrams of said food.
The other thing I’m pleased I did was see the gorgeous Terracotta Warrior lanterns by Xia Nan, originally made for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and temporarily installed at Dawes Park at Circular Quay. What a stunning scene, with the harbour, Opera House, Harbour Bridge and Luna Park in the background. It was great to be able to freely wander around the statues – love an interactive installation! I hope they come back next year. (And maybe by then the selfie stick trend will have died, and I’ll be able to enjoy wandering around the statues and taking rubbish photos without fear of being impaled.)
In the next three pictures I inadvertently snapped unsuspecting visitors looking like nearby statues. See: (1) old chap with great cheekbones, long nose and moustache; (2) lady standing tall with an up-do; and the best one, (3) dude in yellow with an undercut and a topknot.
Gong Hey Fat Choy til next year!
And there I was thinking 3 Mama Chef’s had the oddest name for a Thai restaurant in Sydney… until I met Abb Air Thai Cuisine 1982. The Facebook page tells me the name has no meaning, but that they ‘ensure that presentation and taste are the keys to your very own definition of “Abb Air”’! And also that the owner’s name is Tangerine Khan, which I think is just fabulous.
It had been the presentation which caught my eye last month when I was unusually walking down Goulburn Street beside World Square rather than my usual shortcut through it. The diners whose meals I could see, sitting in the window, had their food served in shallow bamboo baskets, which I thought was pretty presentation for Thai food. I have a longstanding allegiance to Chat Thai, and am usually loathe to try any new Thai place, but 3 Mama Chef’s and recently Surry Hills Eating House have marginally unsettled my allegiance. So I’m a bit more open-minded now, and don’t panic if it’s after 7pm and we’re not yet in the Chat Thai queue!
On a slight soggy Wednesday night, Hubby and Rasta and I had been drinking at the incongruous combination of Bambini Trust and The Smoking Panda, and I was now leading them to dinner: ideally Hawker, but via Boon Café (see – trying new Thai), and maybe via Chat Thai. Boon was full, we predicted a long queue at Chat Thai as it was nearly 8pm, and then I remembered the place on Goulburn Street with the cute bamboo trays, which would be on our way to Hawker anyway. Cute trays still looked cute, and the menu looked enticing (and declared it would ‘simply surprise in taste‘!) so we stopped.
Good move, us! Abb Air Thai Cuisine 1982 was officially excellent, and it’s minutes from my office so I’ll certainly be back. I was thoroughly impressed with our selection, especially the exciting green balls and black soup. I can live with the silly name. (NB: Cash only and BYO, so you need to come prepared.)
The bill for 3 of us was only $54! AND you could get a table without queuing! I note they also do late-night supper, which is handy. Having now enjoyed the tastes as well as the presentation at Abb Air, my very own definition is DELICIOUS ☺
I caught up for lunch with a dear friend who is now conveniently working on Castlereagh Street rather than the Northern Beaches. We met in the new-ish ANZ Tower forecourt thingy on Castlereagh Street, in the block between Park and Market Streets. Lots of nice-looking places to explore there, including a very sweet izakaya called Yamato, where we decided to have an al fresco Japanese lunch. We had such a nice time – assisted by FREE glass of vino and FREE ice cream! – and pencilled in our next lunch date for the same time & place, three weeks hence.