Enter a sensory world at Gowings Bar and Grill.
Arrive to Sydney’s CBD in the pre-workday hours and surrender yourself to a hive of activity. Cars, trucks, cyclists and pedestrians fight for a space on the road in between construction workers lugging machinery, buskers drumming plastic tubs and tourists taking endless snaps. Get caught in this strong current of pedestrians and you’ll miss the entrance to Gowings Bar and Grill, situated on level one of QT Hotel Sydney. It’s entrance is carved out between Topshop and the State Theatre on the corner of George and Market street.
If you’re familiar with QT Hotel and Resort, you’ll know that they place themselves quite forcibly outside the cookie-cutter hotel mould. Greeting you on street level is a host sporting a neon red wig. This in combination with her knee high stockings and tight black ensemble come as a far cry to the tail suited doormen in gloves found at neighbouring luxury hotels. Cross the threshold and give your eyes a moment to adjust. It’s dark in here.
Think you’ve reached your destination? Almost. Enter the lift to reach the hotel’s lobby. Then climb the staircase to find a nude mannequin sitting in the corner. At the end of the room is your friendly maitre d’. You’ve arrived at last.
Created by QT’s Creative Food Consultant Robert Marchetti, Gowings Bar and Grill is a sensory experience. The space is profuse with shiny objects, luxe leather chairs and cushions woven in a mish mash of materials and colours. Copper lights suspend from the ceiling. Reflective circular plates with celebrities faces are bolted to the walls. It’s almost hard to know where to look.
Heading the menu is Julien Pouteaux, a French born chef who’s passion for high quality, precision cooking is palpable. First listed on the menu are a series of juices designed to quench your health conscious thirst, including the juice of the day ($8) and vegetable Juice, made with carrot, apple, celery, beetroot and a hint of organic ginger ($8).
The food menu begins with energy boosting plates such as the watermelon salad. Hidden underneath the watermelon, like little vibrant jewels are pomegranate seeds, bursting with flavour. Subduing the pop and pow of these fruits are dollops whipped ricotta. Fresh mint leaves tie the dish together, making it a very enjoyable starter ($12).
If you’re looking for good bang for your buck, we recommend ordering the bircher muesli with blueberries, goji berries, natural raspberry sherbet and low fat yoghurt. For $9, you’ll receive a very generously sized bowl. With each spoonful, you’ll be pleasantly met by the acidity of the berries. They work to naturally offset the creaminess of the oats and yoghurt. You’ll convince yourself you can’t finish it, that is until you’re scraping the bottom of the bowl.
From the humble to the opulent you can travel with dishes like the black truffle scrambled eggs ($18), finished with asiago cheese, grilled asparagus, lemon balm, and 11 seeded bread. This distinctive smell of truffle hits you first and foremost as the waiter lowers down the plate. Don’t be put off by the modest serving size. The scrambled eggs, heavily marbled with cheese and truffle forces you to slow down a pace. Abundant in seeds, the toast is also quite dense and filling. It’s a rich affair guaranteed to leave you more than satisfied.
The most luxurious, and suitably most expensive dish on the menu is the Eggs Rockefeller ($29). A warm brioche bun cradles a perfectly sous vide egg, topped with farmed black caviar. It doesn’t stop there, with steamed Warragul greens, tarragon and hollandaise sauce enveloping the central pièce de résistance.
Gowings Bar and Grill are strong contender to the CBD cafe scene in Sydney. TheAlthough the prices of some dishes do sit on the higher end, the quality of the food is notably superior to that plate of bacon and eggs you paid $20 for around the corner.
We also see Gowings Bar and Grill as the perfect spot for a breakfast meeting. You’ll find you’re able to talk at a comfortable level, without feeling like your neighbouring diners are encroaching on your conversation.
Gowings Bar and Grill
Level 1, 49 Market St, Sydney NSW 2000
(02) 8262 0062
Open Breakfast 6:30am-10:30am daily, Lunch Monday to Saturday 12:30pm-3:00pm, Dinner 6:00pm-10:30pm daily.