Dunbar House
9 Marine Parade
Watsons Bay, Sydney

Dunbar house is an historic Harbourside venue situated in magnificent Watson's Bay offering breathtaking views down the harbour of Sydney's city skyline. You probably know Dunbar house as the perfect venue for a wedding (which it is) with the famous Moreton Bay Fig tree just outside, a place were many vows have been exchanged.

What you may not know though, is that after a recent refurbishment, Dunbar house now offers a stylish restaurant for a la carte breakfast and lunch, as well as for exclusive hire. The exceptionally stylish decor in addition to the warm welcome upon arrival conveyed a relaxed yet professional atmosphere. The sun was shining so we chose a table outside with a beautiful outlook over the water and Robertson Park. The seating inside is just as exciting with beautiful tables and lovely couches, a perfect setting in any weather.

If you fly first class you start with a glass of champagne before take off so we thought we would do the same (ok. we're not flying today but this place oozes luxury). We chose NV Lanson, a fine French champagne.

With our champagne our appetiser arrived. A delicious scallop served in a cup with a cauliflower volutè and truffle oil - it was very creamy and smooth with a rich flavour.

We love it when our waiter recommends a wine for us so we had a glass of William Fevre Petit Chablis, a light and crisp accompaniment to our entrees which had just arrived.

We had two entrees, Tempura Zucchini flowers stuffed with feta accompanied by tomato salsa, Sicilian olives and rocket, plus nori wrapped quail fillets with avocado, horseradish mousse and papaya. Both were outstanding. The creamy feta and peppery rocket combined well with the fluffy Zucchini flowers. The quail, perfectly cooked, had a zesty kick when combined with the horseradish mousse. Our waiter told us the quail was not a regular menu item but a special for the day (lucky us!).

Next our mains arrived.

First was a lovely beef cheek pie with truffled mash.

The beef was rich and tender, the filo pastry was crisp and buttery.

We really liked the truffled mash too. This turned out to be a very hearty dish with plenty of flavour - and nice pastry for the pie!

Our second main, a Murray river cod served with a quinoa salad was just as impressive. The lime and tomato dressing added a real freshness to it. Both mains were served with 2012 Massale Pinot Noir. We were fortunate enough to meet head chef Tarrant Fennel who spoke to us about his passion for creating a fresh seasonal menu that is modern yet unique, a notion we most definitely noticed today.

And then quite suddenly a heavenly selection of desserts were presented before us accompanied by two glasses of 2010 Dowie Doole Cane Cut Viognier.

The first dessert, A crispy chocolate cannoli with poached rhubarb and lemon balm herb was absolutely impressive.

The hint of lime in the balm lingers on the palette and is very refreshing.

An afternoon tea tray was beautifully presented on a 3 tier stand overflowing with cakes such as a  cherry ripe slice, raspberry cheesecake and a lemon financier. Of course, you can't have a proper afternoon tea without savoury treats and this one is complete with a salmon mousse tart, Parmesan, olive and sundried tomato shortbread and a selection of sandwiches. Oh - and don't forget the scone with lashings of cream and house made berry jam!

Dunbar House offers truly exceptional service in a very chic setting. Our waiter on the day, Michael, provided us with outstanding service and shared a great deal of food knowledge. Dunbar house is open 7 days a week for breakfast and lunch.

The Counts, who are now doing reviews for Sir and Mlady Dine Out, dined as guests of Dunbar House and Grand Pacific Group. Special thanks to Hannah Evans for arranging this visit.

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