Sunday, 20 November 2011

Universal - Sydney - Republic 2 Courtyard Palmer Street, Darlinghurst

The one sad thing about my recent change in job is that I don't get to travel to Sydney as much. I generally say that I prefer Melbourne restaurants as Sydney is too big, flashy, expensive and lacks depth.

But Universal is a clear exception. Other exceptions are Sushi e and Buzo.

I like the idea of a restaurant that is kind of half inside and half courtyard - particularly on a warm balmy night; but the half inside bit is terrible. Facing inside, I was blinded by a garish orange wall, black floors and felt like I was at the Chevron night club.

This is redeemed however by the sensational food.  We had most dishes on the menu and, while small, everything was a taste sensation. I was like "oh my god", "oh my god", "oh my god" - heaven and back.

It is Asian fusion but many steps ahead of the likes of Ezard and Gingerboy. Christine Manfield is a genius with flavours - the menu changes with the seasons.

The service is slow and now and again you have to wave your arm for a waiter.  The wait between meals is too long, and for small meals the hunger just builds.

But this is also redeemed by the decadent desserts. I ate a take on the cappuccino gaytime.

I didn't see the bill cos I didn't pay - sorry, and never have when I have been here - sorry again. But let's assume that it is not cheap but money well spent.

8.5/10. Marks deducted for the long waits and the atmosphere (for half the restaurant).

Universal on Urbanspoon


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