March 28, 2017


unspecified-3.jpegApplejack Hospitality’s popular beachside restaurant, Bondi Hardware, at 39 Hall Street, Bondi Beach recently celebrated its 5th birthday in great style, with a fantastic party like only they know how to throw.

Not only was it a birthday celebration but it was also a relaunch. Applejack Hospitality’s Neutral Bay venue SoCal had taken over the venue for the summer and now this has come to an end, with Bondi Hardware returning better than ever.


The birthday party gave guests the opportunity to have an exclusive first look at the refreshed venue. Bondi Hardware has retained plenty of elements from its rustic roots, but with a lighter boho and industrial feel plus lots of fresh whites, lush greenery and Moroccan textiles and of course the same warm, laid back vibes it’s famed for.


There’s also an exciting new menu that Group Executive Chef Kasper Christiansen worked with the Bondi Hardware team to create. Some of the venue’s most popular dishes have been re-visited and re-worked. During the evening we tasted lime-cured Kingfish tostadas, kimchi paste, avocado & nori dust as well as sriracha buttermilk fried chicken sliders, Monterey jack and bacon mayo. Crispy lamb salad, hummus, feta, Israeli couscous, pear and mint yoghurt was my favourite. Baked artichoke dip with toasted pita breads and feta & sundried tomato polenta bites with basil sour cream topped off these culinary treats.

I tried two very easy to drink cocktails during the evening. The one I enjoyed most was the Garden Party: Blueberry infused Beefeater Gin, elderflower liqueur, basil, lemon, vanilla & rhubarb bitters, although I think the Young Cuban: Havana 3 year old Rum, Aperol, lime, fresh mint & sparkling wine came in a very close second. There was also a selection of beers, ciders and wine available, but who can resist a cocktail or two. I’ll just have to make another visit to Bondi Hardware to test the cocktails again.

Sandra Tiltman


March 28, 2017

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The new on-site brewery, bar & restaurant, Endeavour Tap Rooms, owned by award winning Australian brewer Endeavour Vintage Beer Co and hospitality professionals Applejack Hospitality (Bondi Hardware, The Botanist, SoCal, Della Hyde & The Butler), has recently opened. Conveniently located at 39-43 Argyle Street, The Rocks, this new venue should prove to be a very popular destination for both city workers and tourists who love a beer.

DSC00129 (1).jpgThe renovation of the heritage listed premises into a contemporary space, whilst paying homage and respect to the building’s classic history, coincided with the $15 million NSW Government initiative to renew and revitalise heritage retail tenancies in The Rocks, inspired by successful strategies in heritage retail precincts around the world, including SoHo in New York City and Le Marais in Paris.

The newly installed brewery, offers a selection of on-site brewed beers, served from eight taps, only available at the venue.

Their restaurant menu lends itself to the exceptional beers on tap, using the best local ingredients where possible, from producers that support ethical farming practices. The evening I visited Endeavour Tap Rooms, Head Chef Sam Tingle created a special selection of dishes from the venue’s menu, which showcased their American barbequed and smoked style food. The Kingfish tostada, corn and guacamole; Crispy pork hock and black vinegar chilli; Pacific oysters, parsley and verjuice; Smoked chicken wings with herb Baja sauce and Smoked Mirrool creek lamb ribs with spicy plum sauce were all delicious.

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Endeavour is an Australian brand, rich with integrity and focussed on using the finest ingredients and Applejack delivers consistent fun and friendly service with a focus on epic food. The team at Endeavour Tap Rooms wanted to create a venue with the heart of Endeavour and soul of Applejack. I believe they have succeeded and have created a venue which Sydneysiders and visitors will enjoy for many years to come.

Sandra Tiltman Photos: John Pond


March 26, 2017


In the opening play of the Genesian Theatre Company’s 73rd season, Welsh Poet Dylan Thomas introduces us to a range of deep and quirky characters in his masterpiece “Under Milk Wood”.

A day in the life of a Welsh seaside village sounds quite tame but the fictional Milk Wood is a village like no other. The inhabitants reflect the village’s name, “Llareggub”, which is “Bugger All” backwards. During one Spring day we learn of the desires and dreams of the residents plus their loves and regrets. Here we meet Lily Smalls, who stares at herself in a mirror, the blind sea captain who dreams of his love, plus a woman who lives with her two dead husbands.

The town’s rich history, along with its collection of surprising characters, allows us to see not only how strange life can be but shows us the joys and despairs of age and youth.

Combined with a set designed by Martin Searles and direction by Ylaria Rogers, the fine cast brings life to what could truly be described as a very unusual group of residents.

The play is closely associated with the late Welsh actor, Richard Burton.

“Under Milk Wood” is currently playing at the Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street, Sydney until 8 April 2017. Friday & Saturday nights at 7.30pm with a Sunday matinée at 4.30pm.

Sandra Tiltman


March 3, 2017


London’s biggest comedy hit, “The Play That Goes Wrong”, is in its third sold out year and has recently enjoyed its 1,000th performance in the West End.

Now its Australia’s turn to enjoy this fun filled show featuring the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society which is attempting to put on a 1920s murder mystery, but as the title suggests, everything that can go wrong…does, as the accident prone thespians battle on against all the odds to get to their final curtain call.

Described as Fawlty Towers meets Noises Off, “The Play That Goes Wrong” is currently making audiences laugh in Melbourne before touring to Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.

Written by Mischief Theatre members Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields, the play has won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Comedy, The Whatsonstage award for Best New Comedy and the Moliere Award in Paris for Best New Comedy.  An extended extract from the production was featured at the Royal Variety Performance in the UK and the follow-up play “Peter Pan Goes Wrong” has enjoyed two hugely successful West End runs as well as being filmed for TV and broadcast on BBC1 in England on New Year’s Eve, co-starring Poirot legend David Suchet.

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The cast includes former Neighbours star Brooke Satchwell, Darcy Brown, Francine Cain, Adam Dunn, Luke Joslin, George Kemp, Jordan Prosser, Nick Simpson-Deeks, Tammy Weller and James Marlowe.

When UK Director Mark Bell visited Australia recently to undertake auditions, he commented that he is looking forward to working with this ‘interesting’ and possibly incompetent bunch of would-be thespians. “If their auditions are anything to go by, this cast is going to be hopelessly hilarious and The Play will definitely Go Wrong.  I for one can’t wait to see this debacle unfold.

The production continues to run in London, Paris, Budapest and Rome as well as simultaneously touring the UK and soon to open on Broadway.

Melbourne: Currently playing at the Comedy Theatre, 240 Exhibition Street until 19 March.

Sydney: Opening 5 April 2017 at Roslyn Packer Theatre, 22 Hickson Road, Walsh Bay.

Sandra Tiltman