Melding Middle Eastern and Japanese cuisine harmoniously is Chef Hesam Nouifard of No 32. Restaurant & Bar, Crow’s Nest’s best-kept secret.
It’s not often we stumble across a superb restaurant offering that has remained hidden from the limelight. No 32. Restaurant & Bar is waiting to be discovered within an unassuming building on Falcon Street. Let us preface that the building will be the only thing mediocre about your experience…
Once your eyes meet the glowing copper signage and you ascend the stairs, you’ll be transported to the restaurant equivalent of a palace with velvet booth seating, low-hanging chandeliers, an illuminated marble bar, the smooth sounds of jazz and waiters in black tie.
Chef Hesam Nourifard is at the helm of the kitchen bringing his Middle Eastern roots to each dish. There’s also an element of Japanese cuisine present with umami-rich flavours and finessed culinary techniques. The cuisines meet to create an honest menu where seasonal produce is the hero.
The menu is designed to share and it is suggested you order a la carte across various sections. Fresh seafood is the ultimate appetiser with highlights including Sydney Rock Oysters with a piquant pomegranate granita and Kingfish Crudo which is presented like a scene from Alice In Wonderland with a riot of colour and textures from fennel, radish, roe, ponzu and sea grapes which are often foraged by Nourifard himself. For those that need a dose of Fromage, the Burrata is rich and oozy, as it should be with a side of burnt gem lettuce, dessert lime and herb oil. And proving that no part of the animal should be discarded in cooking is the Roasted Bone Marrow served with fresh sourdough.
Main dishes are as comforting as a home-cooked meal but Nouifard of course elevates the experience. No 32.’s signature is the Star Anise Lamb Shoulder, slow-cooked to pull-apart perfection served with togarashi and refreshing tzatziki to cut through the richness. The Whole Fish brings you the catch of the day with a herb butter marinade and the MB+7 Wagyu Scotch Fillet presents a perfectly blushing piece of meat served with red wine jus which has been made with love.
Sweet tooths can get their fix with a decadent Chocolate Moose served with fruit chutney and puffed rice. If you prefer something more savoury and are impressed by a side of theatre, order the Lemon Sponge with saffron ice cream. Nouifard was inspired by the traditional Iran dessert, Bastani, which combines rose water, saffron, vanilla and pistachios. He puts a unique spin on it by topping the dish with edible snow made from cream and liquid nitrogen, right at your table.
The wine list was a beautiful collage of the best wines from around Australia and beyond. The cocktail list took the same theme as the menu combining Middle Eastern and Japanese flavours.
If you’re looking for a date night home run, celebrating a special occasion or you just prefer the finer things in life, we highly recommend a visit to see Nouifard and his team at No 32. Restaurant & Bar.
Open Wednesday – Sunday from 6pm. Find out more and book here.