The White Hart, Neutral Bay

  7 June 2012

OH HAI! You know what else is awesome about birthdays? Birthday lunch and dinners! After seeing crazy awesome cocktails on posts here and here I knew I wanted to go to The White Hart (19-21 Grosvenor Street, Neutral Bay) for a boozy afternoon and the boy and I managed to catch the last rays of sunshine.

The British Summer Garden Martini ($19) is a must order- I mean just look at it! Squee at the quirkiness! The martini balances precariously on the slab of Astroturf, an ipod shuffle with portable speaker plays a cricket game softly in the background, the watering can holds a liquid that smells of freshly mown lawn and omg that pile of dirt? Chocolate biscuit crumbs hiding absinthe gummy worms! Oh yes novelty how I love thee! The martini is refreshing and surprisingly doesn’t taste very alcoholic and so is very easy to drink in one gulp 😛

Oh don’t mind me, I’m just raking the dirt…

Freshly Shucked Oysters with Cucumber Mint Salsa (1/2 doz $16) are a delight, plump and juicy and a great start to the meal.

Heirloom Tomatoes, Fresh Buffalo Mozzarella, Basil Powder and Balsamic ($14) is not at all what I was expecting- doesn’t the plating just make you want to grab a spoon and dig straight in? First an experimental taste of the green powdery fluff which is the slightly savoury and extremely moreish basil powder, a swipe of the creamy mozza with a dab of the sweet balsamic and crunch into a tomato half to make a delicious combination which makes me overlook that it’s on slate. And you all know how much I hate slate.

The Kingfish Ceviche ($17) is just as pretty with the curls of kingfish draped oh so casually over the balls of watermelon and paper thin radish slices. Teensy bits of lime pulp provide a pleasing burst of juicy sourness.

Absolutely could not resist choosing another cocktail from the ‘new school just plain strange’ section and selected the Breakfast Mojito ($20). Presentation is just everything and I love interactive foods/drinks!

We were given instructions on the order of what to do and oh boy it begins with brushing your teeth with a homemade mojito toothpaste and let me tell you we got quite a few odd looks as we brushed away! A shot of neon blue rum and mint mouthwash is next, followed by a candied mint leaf with fizzy sherbet powder on a spoon and then grab your syringe and shoot up the rum! Lip schmacking fun!

Moving onto mains, the Porcini Mushroom Risotto with Black Truffle Mist ($25) while perfectly cooked with just the right amount of bite, wasn’t as exciting as the entrees or the drinks. Yes it was tasty but that mist of black truffle must’ve totally floated away and was completely undetected.

The Sirloin with Horseradish and Seasonal Vegetables ($29) was perfect for Noods who can handle only so much of deconstructed style plating. Silky smooth mash was absolutely perfect with the medium rare sirloin which had just the right amount edging of fat.

What’s this, another cocktail? Ahh don’t worry I wasn’t the designated driver! But really how could I go past the Smoked Bacon Manhattan ($18)? That was one seriously crispy rasher of bacon but oh boy did that cocktail pack a punch! Definitely a bit more heavy handed with the alcohol than the previous drinks, the maple syrup didn’t get to play with the bourbon but was smacked hard instead.

Edible Trio of American Classics ($16) was another on the cocktail list that sounded intriguing, starting off with an edible martini that I palmed off to Noods as I’m not a big olive fan, the long island ice tea marshmallows were awesome and light as air, and a spoonful of sweet clover club sorbet (wiki says gin, lemon juice, raspberry syrup) was deeelightful.

Our last cocktail! La Premiere ($18) teehee I heart popcorn! A classic rum & coke with lime and topped with caramel popcorn and a side of salty popcorn. Ridiculously addictive.

Feeling quite full and just a tad tipsy we decided to share a dessert between the two of us. The TWH Strawberries and Cream ($15) is picture perfect with all the shades of a pink rainbow (altho alas! Another slate plate!). I’m a bit hazy on what everything was — and Noods isn’t much help either- but I’m pretty sure it was strawberry sorbet with strawberry mascarpone, dabs of strawberry coulis, strawberry biscuit crumbs and fresh strawberries. It was a deliciously light and refreshing dessert and the best lunch I’ve had in ages. Yes the bill can get pricey but the staff were super friendly and didn’t at any time rush us.

Definitely worth the trek over the Bridge and will have to try the rest of the cocktail menu soon 😀

The White Hart on Urbanspoon

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