From Patagonia to Balmain.
Step into a vibrant new chapter for Balmain’s culinary scene with Casa Esquina, opening its doors on February 16th. This fire-focused Argentinian eatery from Atticus Hospitality, the team behind Paddington’s beloved Tequila Mockingbird, promises a journey of smoky flavours and warm hospitality.
Housed in the historic corner building on Elliott Street, Casa Esquina embraces its past while forging a future grounded in authenticity. Head Chef Will Quartel and Director Michael Fegent embarked on a three-week odyssey through Argentina, immersing themselves in the culture and cuisine beyond the typical tourist trail. Their passion translates to the menu, which showcases the diverse culinary history of Argentina, from classic parrilla-grilled meats to lesser-known treasures like Fugazzeta, a stuffed pizza reflecting Italian influences.
The heart of Casa Esquina beats within its open-plan kitchen. Witness the mesmerizing dance of flames as chefs expertly cook over the parrilla, their expertise on full display. Indulge in premium cuts of steak, charred vegetables bursting with flavour, and unique offerings like wagyu beef tongue pastrami and kangaroo and maraschino cherry empanadas.
Beyond the sizzle of the grill, Casa Esquina celebrates the art of winemaking. Head Sommelier Sophie Gitterle curates a captivating list featuring South American gems alongside Australian and Spanish favourites. Quench your thirst with a Fernet Royale, a playful twist on Argentina’s national drink, or La Spritz Esquina, a refreshing concoction infused with Italian aperitifs.
The restaurant’s design reflects the duo’s inspirations. Earthy tones reminiscent of the Andes and Australian outback create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Two ancient camphor laurel trees grace the courtyard, offering a tranquil oasis under the Sydney sky. The spaces are designed for all occasions, whether you seek a casual bite by the bar, a lively social gathering on the balcony, or an intimate celebration in the private dining room.
“Casa Esquina is a tribute to the building’s rich history, the vibrant Balmain community, and the spirit of Argentina,” says Fegent, a Balmain local himself. “We want to create a space where everyone feels welcome, whether it’s for a quick Tuesday night meal or a special weekend celebration.”
So, Balmain residents and Sydney explorers alike, prepare to be captivated by the smoky allure of Casa Esquina. As the flames dance and the flavours unfold, let yourself be transported to the heart and heat of Argentina.