10 Questions with James Metcalfe

10 Questions With..., Eat, Restaurants, Sydney / 29 April 2013

A Potts Point icon, The Bourbon, has recently embarked on a new chapter paying homage to it’s heritage with a unique food and live music experience. The rebirth has seen a tasteful reinvention of the interior blending New Orleans flair and timeless elegance.
Head Chef, James Metcalfe, prides himself on exquisite food influenced by New Orleans flavours with a contemporary twist. There’s sharing, grazing and feasting options from lunch through to late night supper.
Capturing the essence of the famous Rue Bourbon there is live music seven nights a week, showcasing Sydney and Australia’s diverse musical talent.
We recently caught up with James who gave us a little insight into his life:
1. Where did your inspiration for the menu at The Bourbon come from?
I had a brief to keep in line with some of the history of the bourbon. We used New Orleans to inspire the menu, but in no way did we want to keep it classic or authentic. The menu is seasoned with the spices of the south but in a Sydney style, being cleaner, lighter and fresher.
2. Top 3 ingredients you can’t live without?
Star anise, duck fat & chardonnay vinegar
3. Do you cook, eat out or take out on your nights off and what do you eat?
I love to do all of them! We love to cook on the BBQ when its warm, home cooked lasagna when it’s cold and if it’s take out then Thai from spice I am. We try to eat out once a month too!
4. Where do you find the best produce?
Having a great relationship with my suppliers is a must including Frank from Decosti seafood, Anthony from Vics meats and our various suppliers at the markets. They always keep me up to date with great produce. Keeping in touch with local, seasonal produce always ensures the best quality dishes as an end result
5. What is your food philosophy?
Clean, simple, fresh & seasonal. Respect the produce and you can’t go wrong.
6. Where is your favourite place to eat in Sydney?
Spice I Am, or Pilu & for breakfast David Bitton
7. Your fondest childhood foodie memory?
It would have to be opening up the first elderflower champagne after storing it for 3 months with my Nana. It used to burst open with bubbles everywhere – it tasted amazing.
8. Favourite drink?
After work on the weekend it would have to be cold beer!
9. Where would we find you when you’re not in the kitchen?
Hanging out with my 1 year son Benjamin, we love the park, the zoo or anywhere outside really!
10. What plate of food would you bring to a potluck dinner?
It would have to be The Bourbon’s 4 hour slow cooked beef rib. We poach it for 2 hours then marinate in spices, garlic vinegar & olive oil, then slow roast it on the rotisserie. It’s marbled so it’s soft, moist and meaty.
The Bourbon
22 Darlinghurst Road,
Potts Point, NSW, 2011
(02) 9035 8888