22 Union St
Pyrmont, Sydney

Cafe XXII is an old world building across the road from the new world of The Star. It's right on the corner - in fact the entrance doorway is literally on the corner.

It's a cosy, intimate place with lovely exposed stone walls from a bygone era. It's also a compilation of small rooms that join onto each other. The entrance room has some tables but down a short walkway are more rooms and therefore more tables.

The whole place has a charm about it that appeals as soon as you walk in the door. A memorable feature for us was that the service was impeccable throughout the whole evening.

We started with the mezze platter to share. It sounded attractive on the menu and looked and tasted just as good.

Described as a selection of cold meats, three cheese, olives and roast pimento it was a great starter.

It was all delicious and the platter also had a few grissini sticks on top as well. It was deceptively big and filling and cost $16.00 which was decent value for this.

Starter two to share was the tapas. It consisted of grilled Turkish bread with extra virgin olive oil and oregano served with a trio of homemade dips.

These were again extremely fresh and all very tasty. Mlady and I both loved the semi-dried tomato dip and agreed it was our favourite. The olive dip was also another winner too.

At only $11.00 it was good value for something to share among a couple or a group.
The main courses are limited in number but despite this there's still a variety to cover all tastes.

The "Pasta" was penne carbonara with sauteed bacon, onion, garlic, white wine, creme fraiche and finished with fresh parsley and Parmesan cheese.

It was a good sized serving that was al dente and two in our group that ordered this dish both said that they loved it.

The meal cost $26.00.

I had the "Risotto" and it was excellent. It was described as chilli prawn risotto with olives, capsicum and red onion sauteed in garlic and chilli in a rich tomato concasse finished with spinach, basil and parsley.

There were plenty of plump juicy prawns in this dish - in fact more than you would normally get in a dish of this kind!

This filling meal was $29.00.

Mlady had the "Lasagne" - as she has often been known to do.

She said it was certainly nice but it could have perhaps had a bit more flavour.

Nevertheless she still finished it all so it must have been pretty good.

It was described in the entree section of the menu simply as Lasagne al forno and was a mere $19.00 which was excellent value.

Cafe XXII is a lovely place. The food was really good but on top of that the service was faultless - being both attentive, friendly and helpful in all the right ways. It's this "going the extra mile" that will ensure people come back again and again.

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