The team behind ACME have expanded beyond pasta with their newest venture, a wine bar fittingly named Bar Brose, just down the road in Darlinghurst. The long, narrow space is minimalistic but trendy, with a palpable buzz from the full house of diners who are still there when we arrive for a late sitting on a Friday night. We’re seated at the back on the stylish hexagonal group table, which makes for a bit of a novelty dining experience in a world where we’re used to round group tables.
We kick off with an intriguing Comte gougere, which looks like a scone but is basically an oversized choux pastry full of creamy Comte cheese that gets our tastebuds going.
Comte gougere, $5 each
The next starter is really my kind of bar snack – the Fried Onion, artfully presented like a “blooming onion” flower that’s been battered and fried to perfection. It’s paired with an addictive fermented jalapeño sauce.
Fried Onion, $10
The fusion elements of the menu really come out with the signature Potato Gnocchi, which are fluffy pillows pan fried with chunks of salty Chinese sausage (lap cheong). The umami factor is upped for this dish thanks to the kombu butter and chilli.
Potato gnocchi, lap cheong, chilli, kombu butter, $20
For the last savoury dish, we had the Poulet au Vin Jaune d’Australie – executed well with tender pieces of chicken packed full of flavour, after being cooked in wine.
Poulet au Vin Jaune d’Australie $20/$32
To cap off the night, we had their signature dessert – the Crisp Potato which looks like a wafer thin sandwich with a lovely brown butter mousse filling, laced with salted caramel. Something a little different from the usual desserts we see around town – but every bit just as decadent in its own way.
Crisp potato, brown butter mousse, salted caramel, $12
The menu at Bar Brose is subtly unconventional, remixing elements of classic dishes with modern, fusion ingredients to make it fresh. With its industrial chic decor and friendly service, it’s a solid choice for mid-range dining, though all the tasty bar snacks can add up on the bill fairly quickly.