Food and Drink: The Gantry opens its doors
On Tuesday, we headed along to Pier One Sydney Harbour for the launch party of The Gantry Restaurant and Bar. The event saw the recently refurbished bar/restaurant officially swing open its doors, with over 200 esteemed guests (and rabble like us) there to help them start things off with a bang.
Perched on the water’s edge with delicious views of Walsh Bay, The Gantry’s brilliant opening night allowed the great and the good of Sydney (and, as we said before, us) to savour sample dishes from Executive Chef; Chris Irving’s menu. Meanwhile, Bar Manager Ben Taouss’ signature cocktails were on hand to wet our whistles.
We started off with “Swinging Monkey” (Monkey Shoulder, coconut water, chocolate bitters, served over hand chipped ice), which was sweet and refreshing and, dangerously, didn’t taste especially alcoholic.
Following a couple of these, we tried “Lady on the Pier” (Absolut Vodka, shaken with pink grapefruit, lemon myrtle and elderflower). After much consideration, one of our team decided these tasted “a bit like Strepsils” (don’t tell the Bar Manager).
Flutes of Moet Champagne followed, as we tasted a seemingly never-ending supply of scrumptious canapés, the highlight of which were the flavoursome Zucchini Flowers (Hawkesbury goats curd, zucchini vinaigrette, garnished with edible violet flowers). Also the Goat’s Milk Pudding (Rhubarb Jelly and dehydrated Rhubarb) was a standout.
On top of the canapés was an abundance of fresh seasonal produce from some of New South Wales’ best, including Australia on a Plate, Cooks Co-op, Epicurean Harvest, Joto Fresh Fish and De Costi Seafood. We pretty much ate our bodyweight in cheese.
We also took a few nanoseconds away from eating to learn about how the property is steeped in maritime history. The Gantry Restaurant & Bar’s design apparently draws on the industrial roots of Pier One for inspiration. Rich, dark, club-styled furniture, brass furnishings and weathered timber flooring juxtapose exposed pillars and steel framing.
Just as the venue’s new design pays homage to the property’s past, both the restaurant and bar menus have been created with an emphasis on provenance. Each and every item on the menu conveys a story told through high-quality ingredients, like the sustainable sea-to-table offerings on the menu.
The owner Robert Magid said, “We have created a unique venue that sits in synergy beside Sydney’s two internationally acclaimed structures, the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, where one can experience the essential elements of this great city. We have blended the architectural features to complement the historical structure built in 1912.”
The result is a truly lovely ambience. The Gantry feels instantly classy but at the same time absolutely chilled. Meanwhile, the outside area is equally suited for tropical afternoon cocktails as it is for an atmospheric moonlight drink or two. Lovely.
Pay it a visit at 11 Hickson Road, Walsh Bay, Sydney.
Find out more about The Gantry on Facebook.
Review and view photo by Bobby Townsend. Bar and drinks photos by Belinda Rolland photography.