10 William St
Paddington, NSW 2021
As my time in Sydney draws to a close, it seems only appropriate to have one last whinge about how hard it is to get around the city, so here we go: why is 10 William St, and the whole of Paddington in general, such a pain in the ass to get to? Despite having been on my to-eat list for almost the entirety of my time here, I’ve only just discovered the delights of this little Italian-tinted wine bar, and I’m pretty mad about it. The vibes here are immaculate, and the food is simple, seasonal, and exquisite. It is exactly the type of place that I love, and just one more thing to make the move away from Sydney that much harder (though, not as hard as it is to find parking in the area).
Rating: 15/20 – wine bar magic.
The must-order: pretzel with whipped bottarga. and all the pastas.
The Pretzel & Whipped Bottarga ($18) is the 10 William St signature, and there is no other bread course like it. The pretzel alone, warm and yeasty from the oven, and encrusted with seeds and spices, is good enough to become a classic. But the bottarga really takes it to transcendental levels with its light but oh-so-rich texture, the umami, briny notes released as it melts into the heat of the bread. I had no trouble saying yes to an extra piece of the excellent Focaccia ($6ea) to wipe up the remainder.
The Asparagus, Hazelnut & Lardo ($21) is a triumph of spring, the plump, tender sprigs contrasting sweetly with its earthy accompaniments.
Likewise, the Pippies, Wild Garlic & Chilli ($35), in a delicate, buttery sauce, tastes like summer nights with a cold bottle of white.
On paper, the Chitarra & Lamb Ragu ($36) may sound like your usual Spaghetti Bolognese type of thing, but that’s actually neither fair nor true. It’s actually the most luxurious white wine-based sauce, the succulent lamb cooked down a sticky richness that coats every strand of the hand-made pasta. It is equal parts comfort and elegance.