Sir D never likes to visit the same restaurant twice. Every time I ask him after a meal if he would return, he says, “I’d rather go someplace new” (unless it’s somewhere really amazing like Quay). So in the spirit of trying someplace new, we wander around Darling Harbour looking for a place to have a nice dinner before catching a movie at the IMAX and we stumble across Coast on the top level of Cockle Bay Wharf.
It’s still early on a Friday night so the restaurant is quite empty. It’s nice and spacious with views of Darling Harbour and the Harbouside Shopping centre on the other side. We’re seated at a table with a good view of the open kitchen and above us is a big light fixture which reminds me of ocean waves.
We order two mains and a side and while we wait we’re given some complimentary bread and olive oil to munch on. The bread is actually really good, so when the waiter asks if we would like some more bread, we happily say yes.
Sir D orders the lamb rump which arrives nice and pink on our table with a ribbon of fat around the side. The meat is succulent and tender for the most part, but I do get one piece which is a bit tougher than the others. The kipfler potatoes, arranged in a neat little stack next to the lamb, have been roasted until slightly crispy on the outside and are the perfect accompaniment to the lamb.
I go with the seared yellowfin tuna which comes paired with some interesting things like candied almonds and ruby grapefruit. The sweet and salty combination is interesting – as soon as the plate is placed in front of my I can smell a sweet, vanilla-like fragrance from the candied almonds and from the syrupy sauce but there are also sour flavours from the grapefruit and the orange segments, as well as savoury notes from the seared tuna and a slight bitterness from the witlof.
I was afraid that the tuna would be overcooked but it’s still beautifully pink and rare in the middle and there is nice peppery kick from the seasoning. I’m not completely sold on the candied almonds with the tuna but I love the combination of the tuna and citrus segments. It’s a great dish and I’m reluctant to relinquish the other half of the dish to Sir D.
A side of pont-neuf chips is artfully arranged and flecked with sea salt. I find them a little bit over-salted so I shake off some of the salt and it seems to do the trick. They’re not the best chips I’ve ever had since they lack a bit of crunch factor but they’re nice and fluffy on the inside and definitely pretty to look at.
We’re surprisingly full so we forgo dessert and leave as the dining room starts to fill up. The restaurant has a relaxing, calm ambience with friendly and attentive service. Even the chefs in the open kitchen seemed calm and collected and this made the whole dining experience very enjoyable. Sir D would probably say he’d want to try someplace new, but I would have no objection to returning one day to sample more of their menu.
The Roof Terrace, Cockle Bay Wharf
Darling Harbour, Sydney NSW 2000
Ph: +61 2 9267 6700
Lunch: Monday to Friday, noon-2.30pm
Dinner: Monday to Saturday, 6-10.30pm