The Cottage
342 Darling St
Balmain, Sydney

The Cottage is almost like a little bit of Surry Hills but transported into Balmain. The place isn't big yet it uses its space so well to create a multitude of different areas to accommodate quite a few customers - and it's charm, drinks and food are attracting plenty of regulars. Set well back from the road in the growing foodie hub of Balmain, it has a front courtyard that almost has an English country garden appearance with tables well spread out under a canopy of leafy branches. There's a long cocktail, wine and beer list to meet most desires. Similarly with the food menu, they have oysters, plenty of very interesting share plates, wood fired pizza's, some delicious cheeses and a few desserts to cap a great night off!

We were there for their Winter menu launch to sample the food and sip their cocktails - tough gig!

The food on offer for the launch was of course samples of their new menu.

It included (pictured at left) mushrooms stuffed with barley, dried fruit herbs and chevre which Mlady devoured , maple and cider beef brisket with celeriac crisps and horseradish cream which had great flavours, oysters served with lemon and Merlot vinaigrette which I enjoyed and finally tasty arancini balls of tomato, smoked mozzarella and Parmesan.
Also available was a lovely Yellowfin tuna tartare that I personally could not get enough of! 
We also had roasted cauliflower with pulled lamb shoulder, raisins and vinaigrette (I had two to be honest!). A selection of cheeses were also available and some good ones at that! They had Locheilan Triple ring soft from Shepparton in Victoria, Queso Valdeon blue from Leon in Spain, Wyngaard goats cheese from Woerden in the Netherlands and Fleuron Vache Brebis semi hard from the Pyrenees in France. We were able to sample them all and it was a lovely selection - and just as good for our second serving! 

As it was a launch there were also plenty of drinks flowing freely! The drinks menu for the night showcased a few of the favourites from The Cottage. We couldn't resist and tried all three cocktails on offer. First there was the Speyside Sour made from Glenfiddich 12 years old and ginger liqueur extended with lemon juice, honey water and orange bitters. There was also The Sloe Cuban made from Plymouth sloe gin shaken with pressed mint and lime and with soda added.

The final cocktail available for the launch was a Lemon and Basil Gimlet made from citron vodka and lemoncello shaken with fresh basil, lemon and lime. 

The Cottage is a lovely spot. It has a comfy charm to it - creating plenty of spaces to sit back and relax in. The drinks are good with plenty to choose from and so is the food which is both interesting and tasty.

Sir and Mlady were invited to the Winter Menu Launch which was a private function. Special thanks to The Cottage and to Olivia Warne and Jo Steuart of Pendulum Communications for inviting us.

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