BLACK By Ezard at The Star

Aside from the relatively new Westfield, The Star was Sydney’s other most anticipated dining precinct opening. Tenants now include David Chang’s Momofuku Seiōbo, Teage Ezard’s BLACK by ezard, Chase Kojima’s Sokyo and Stefano Manfredi’s Balla. Plus you’ll also find Adriano Zumbo Patissier, Flying Fish & Chips, Messina Gelato and more, in the Food Cafe Court.

I had the pleasure of recently dining at BLACK, and it totally blew me away.

Considering how closed-in Star City used to be, I certainly did not expect to be dining with a great view.

Nor did I expect to be served the most adorable complimentary mini loaf of brioche.

The bronze shell glows, just beckoning to be sliced. The innards is remarkably buttery yet so light and fluffy. With a smear of butter and a pinch of volcanic black salt, it is simply irresistible.

The best part of this is, that it’s complimentary. So when asked if we’d like a second serving, I don’t hesitate to say yes.

What a scrumptious and luxurious start to the meal.

Another fabulous touch is the iPad drinks menu. I assumed you could order from it directly but am soon alerted that the process is to add the drinks to a list and then to hand the list to the waiter. I guess they’re right in thinking that it’d be dangerous to allow customers to order drinks directly…

The Boston Tea Party ($18) is a delightful concoction of Jamaican Rum with apricot brandy, lime and English breakfast tea. The Spice Market Cocktail ($20) is even better – London Dry, Gin, passionfruit liqueur, mango, chilli and peach bitters. Ground chilli has been thoughtfully pressed only on one side of the cup, allowing those less or more tolerant of chilli to sip from either sides.

The glass was so pretty, I could have almost accidentally slipped it into my handbag. LOL!

The starters are exquisite creations. Ranging from $12 (Oysters with yuzu and wakame jelly) to $34 (Organic farm egg with potato cream, white alba truffles, iberico ham and herb salad), there’s something to whet anyone’s appetite.

Zen has the kingfish sashimi ($26) which is served carpaccio style with sesame custard, edamame and a chardonnay vinaigrette. It is such a stunning fusion of flavours and textures.

I have the beef tartare ($25) which is hidden beneath a ridiculously thin film of beetroot jelly. The tartare is deliciously creamy and well seasoned. I love the precious earthy sweetness of the heirloom beets and the interesting addition of mustard ice-cream and puffed wild rice.

All the signature seafood main courses at BLACK are poached in Hawaiian ocean water before being served. How fancy. Nonetheless, the Hapuka ($46) is beautifully cooked and features an understated elegant combination of cauliflower, crustacean vinaigrette and shellfish oil.

Dishes from the grill start from $45 (200g grass fed angus fillet) and go up to $180 (1kg live lobster) – perhaps attractive to the casino’s high rollers.

Zen’s 180g grain fed wagyu MBS 9+ striploin ($95) was “prepared sous vide before being wood grilled, providing a unique, tender and flavoursome steak“. It looks unusually immaculate on the white plate, not a particle out of place. And as you would expect, it tastes absolutely scrumptious. His foie gras butter is an extra $6 (all sauces are extra) but it does come with a gratifying satisfaction.

Sides are mostly $9 or $10. We share the grilled asparagus with prosciutto and quail egg ($10), the hand cut chips with rosemary salt ($9) and the parsnip fritters with coconut and tumeric caramel ($10). They’re so unique and quirky in presentation; the composition of our two mains with these three side dishes, begins to look more like the set of a food magazine photo shoot than the table of a restaurant.

For dessert, we share the passionfruit cream ($18), with macadamia financier, mango sorbet and dried coconut. There’s nothing simple about this dish but the complex preparation methods whiffs over my head as I take a breath and indulge in the delicate flavours of summer.

BLACK has a lovely collection of teas on the menu, so to finish, we have tea. Zen has the whole peppermint herbal teafrom China ($5) while I have the Jasmine pearls green tea, also from China ($5).

If you’re out to impress, BLACK is definitely a great pick. It is lavish and sophisticated without the unpretentiousness.

Black By Ezard
The Star
Level G, Harbourside
80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont, NSW
Phone: 1800 700 700
Web: star.com.au/dine/signature-dining/black.html

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