FOOD FROM THE TRAIN AT MEDITRAINEAN

August 14, 2016

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Located in Sydney’s foodie hub of Crows Nest, this unique new restaurant only opened in April this year and is one which the whole family will enjoy, from youngsters to grandparents. As the name suggests, the food is Mediterranean inspired but where MediTrainean differs from others serving this cuisine, the dishes arrive at your table via a train set up, think Japanese sushi train.

IMG_9547The well stocked train runs down the centre of the restaurant with seating on either side, where it is very easy to access the delicious food as it travels along the rails, on display to tempt the hungry diner. A huge variety of dishes, from Mediterranean inspired mezze tapas plates, covering entrée, main and dessert, all based on tasty home-style Mediterranean tastes, are just waiting to be chosen.

Diners also have the option to order fresh food from the flame grill.

Focussing on fresh ingredients, local produce and family favourite recipes, MediTrainean offers the diner the choice of a bar, table service or selections from the train that can be eaten either in the restaurant or packed and taken home.

MediTrainean’s blue and white interior, gives the diner a true Mediterranean region experience, especially when the sun filters in through the large windows.

When I went for lunch recently, I selected from the train some flat bread plus a dip of chickpea, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and olive oil – it was just too tempting watching it go past.

IMG_9585I could not choose between two of the delicious salads, so I had both. Pearl Cous Cous
with spiced roast pumpkin, apricots, dates, chickpeas, roasted walnuts and orange segments, as well as the Spiced Carrot chickpea, crumbled feta, sultanas, toasted almonds, mint, garlic, honey and dukkah. Highly recommend both of them.

For mains I decided to order from the grill. The Salmon Skewers in a citrus and dill marinade and Tiger Prawns
in fresh herbs, garlic & olive oil were absolutely delicious.

Even though I was no longer hungry, I could not leave without trying some of the desserts from the train which I had been eyeing all through the meal. The Roast Quince with crème fraiche, halva and rose petals was superb as was the Cheese Cake of baked ricotta, almond and pine nuts.

IMG_9562Licensed & BYO, MediTrainean Restaurant, 55 Alexander Street, Crows Nest, 2065 is open Tuesday & Wednesday 5.30pm-10pm, Thursday & Friday 12noon-10pm. Closed Sunday & Monday. www.meditrainean.com.au

Sandra Tiltman     Photos: John Pond

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FINO PAR SERVES FLAVOURS OF SPAIN

December 2, 2014

DSC04129Located in Sydney at the corner of Elizabeth & Goulburn Streets, Fino Par’s industrial chic, minimalist décor with polished concrete floor and open frontage offers an inviting funky vibe.

The name is so appropriate for this new Spanish inspired restaurant & bar, where traditional concepts meet contemporary ideas. Fino Par, meaning fine pair in Spanish, is an apt description for the team of Executive Chef, Nelson Burgos and Food & Beverage Manager, Brett Harris.

DSC04123Finding inspiration from his cultural heritage and with a passion for supporting Australian producers, Chilean born Executive Chef, Nelson Burgos has been working in the Sydney and Melbourne food scene for over ten years. His philosophy is to harness the finest Australian ingredients to create simple, yet stunning dishes.

Brett also brings close to ten years experience in the industry to Fino Par and is excited to share his passion for Spanish sherry. Reviving old beverage favourites of sherry and sangria, Brett says he looks forward to showcasing his innovative sherry cocktail menu to Sydney. “We’re putting sexy back into sherry, we want to change the misconception that it’s only a drink to pour for your grandmother. As well as showcasing his Spanish sherry collection, Brett also has some great cocktails on the menu, like the Margarita, which I enjoyed when I went for dinner recently.

From noon until late, the menu is “all day all night” tapas, fusing only the best seasonal local produce with Spanish flavours. Nelson’s menu strikes a balance between modern and contemporary Spanish, with dishes designed to be enjoyed as share plates. As a special treat only available at lunch each Friday, Nelson cooks an enormous pan of paella, but be warned, when the pan is empty that’s it, no more till next week.

DSC04736The evening we visited Fino Par, we decided to put ourselves in Nelson’s hands. Starting with a sharing board of cold meats, consisting of cured Spanish ham, spicy Spanish salami, cured mild salami and air-dried salted wagyu beef, we followed with a velvet smooth liver parfait with capers & grilled bread.

The robust flavour of salted cod tweaked our taste buds before trying the delicate octopus carpaccio, which to my mind was the highlight and went very well with the plate of potatoes with paprika & aioli and chopped asparagus tartar with egg.

Split chargrilled king prawns with lemon, herbs & garlic followed by roasted hanger steak with piquillo pepper chimichurri sauce rounded off the superb meal, but we still managed to find a little bit of room to try the manjar stuffed churro for dessert.

Sandra Tiltman    Photos: John Pond