One year on, I’m still trying to find the perfect pasta in Sydney that doesn’t break the bank. Although I’ve had a few bowls here and there, I found that most of the time they’re either cheap and super inauthentic, or pricey but only somewhat authentic. Admittedly I haven’t been looking around as much as I would have wanted to – at $30 or so per dish, it’s just a little bit out of my price range for casual meals. But last year, La Favola burst onto the Newtown scene in a whirl of rave reviews, with bold promises of freshly made pasta and Authentic Italian, all for something like $20 a bowl – consider me sold.
Frankly, I don’t know how anyone can stomach dining with me. I will always passive-aggressively insist on picking the restaurant (after falsely offering the privilege of choice to my unfortunately companion), and as soon as something has been agreed on, I will go ahead and change my mind to something entirely different. This will occur approximately once a day until the day of the meal, where I am forced to decide on a restaurant. But the ordeal doesn’t stop there. Once we actually arrive at the restaurant, I am a flaky dining companion at best, and a mortifying one at worst. I will get up without warning to take photos of the interior, garnering stares from diners and staff alike,…
As someone who usually identifies as a glass-half-empty sort of person, I can be remarkably optimistic when it comes to food. Despite an appalling experience at the well-rated Encasa, as well as the general consensus that Spanish food in Sydney just isn’t that great, I was still bright-eyed and bushy-tailed when I heard about Bar Tapa, which promises to be unapologetically Spanish. On a Saturday night, Bar Tapa has a convivial, buzzing vibe, and if it feels a little everyman, it’s made up for by the energy of the diners. The wall-to-wall Spanish memorabilia makes for some good conversation starters, and definitely adds to the authentic feel.
One of the suckiest things about being in Sydney is not having my sister around at all times. I’ve gotten rather used to her in the last 15-odd years, and I’ll admit it was rather jarring to not have her constantly in my hair all of a sudden. On the bright side however, during the times we do see each other (when one of us is on holiday), we manage to get some excellent quality time in – in this case, in pasta form. My sister loves good pasta more than any other food, and given that the only times she gets fancy restaurant pasta is when she’s with me, I spent weeks leading up to her visit agonising over…
This meal at Alimentari is brought to you by K! The beloved foodie in crime who, if you’ll remember, gave me an awful recommendation for Kaneda. So this is his one big chance at redemption – let’s see if he’s earned his way back into my good books… Alimentari is the closest thing K has to a local café; Mondays see him grabbing a quick lunch from the ever-changing menu, before catching a movie at Cinema Nova. Of course, he is far from the only person for whom Alimentari is a regular haunt. Operating in the same location since 1998, there are many people who seem just as home here as they would be in their own kitchens.
I’m not much of a birthday person. I know plenty of people who use birthdays as an excuse to have a month-long celebration but frankly? I just don’t have that much energy. For me, what birthdays really amount to is a chance to have a good meal, where you splurge a bit on something you normally wouldn’t have. This year however, things are a little different. Not only am I in a brand-new city, instead of one full of restaurants I’ve been lusting over for years, I’m also on a significantly tighter budget on account of living away from home. But after much research and changing of minds, I eventually settled on Restaurant Hubert to celebrate turning 25 (ugh).