So there we were, battling it out on the first free ferry from the foreshore steps out the front of the Museum Of Contemporay Art. A battle that involved inner-city creative types, the odd tourist, many, many parents and their offspring and this pair from downtown Erskineville. I was warned the crowds could get overwhelming, hence getting there early and securing a spot in the line-up for being one of the first batch onto Cockatoo Island where this years Biennale was extending its tentacles. Cockatoo Island is the largest island in Sydney Harbour, it’s a former convict prison and shipyard and has a lodgement for Heritage Listing, a place I’ve always wanted to explore. It’s industrial, it’s a little delapidated and it has million-dollar views over the city.
What’s all this got to do with Baroque? Absolutely nothing. Baroque is where we rested our backsides after trapsing through a complex of warehouses and delapidated colonial buildings overlooking the gleaming towers of our graceful sin-city, wondering how on Earth many of the “artists” qualified to show their “pieces” to the general public. Anything goes with art these days, or so it seems, and methinks chemical and herbal drugs may have something to do with their inspiration. Those squealing ankle-biters didn’t make for a pleasant cultural experience but then again, neither did the art.
To be honest the views and the boat ride out there significantly outweighed the actual event and the appetite we developed on return to the real world gravitated us to that easy-on-the-eye bistro slash patisserie otherwise known as Baroque. Many places have previously called this corner location home and I’ve got to say the Baroque team have decked it out beautifully while still retaining the rugged elements of the historic warehouse it occupies. Polished concrete, crumbling plaster and exposed brick and wooden beams marry beautifully with the hanging golden orb lights, transparent rose-coloured acrylic chairs and those big windows framing our beloved Bridge looming outside. How very Sydney.
The brunch menu consists of a few egg options, toasted baguettes topped with gruyere and ham, duck leg confit with white beans, pastries and much more. The coffee is quite decent as well. The quiche of the day (15) happens to be a simple yet traditional caramelised onion variety with a generous splodge of creme fraiche and side of mixed leaves. Nothing outstanding but delicious nonetheless. I love how it’s served on a wooden paddle.
My choice, the tartine of grilled steak (18) is tender and flavoursome. The meat sits atop a half baguette with caramelised onion, mustard and a bubbling golden layer of grilled gruyere. Oooh la la … now this is the stuff. A side of fries and a copse of rabbit greens and I’m smiling.
Baroque Bistro Patisserie 88 George Street The Rocks 2000 9241 4811 website