Out To Lunch

Crown Street, Surry Hills
Crown Street, Surry Hills

Despite the temptation to stay inside the entire wearing track pants, I still managed to make it out of the house today.

It’s been one of those awful cold, wet days in Sydney. I think I heard something on the news about it being the wettest April day in ten years or something like that.

I went in to work for a little while and completed a couple of things. It’s always easier to get things done when there are no distractions, isn’t it?

And I went out with a friend for lunch at the nearby and recently opened, Cafe Sicilia in Surry Hills.

In what was a space previously occupied by a Thai restaurant, Cafe Sicilia has given Surry Hills its first “mega cafe” as I descried it a “few weeks ago“.

As I’ve walked back and forth past the Cafe Sicilia since it opened I’ve been looking closely at the menu, and taking a sly peek at what people had on their plates. Sadly, I’ve never walked past at the right time, with people either having just ordered or having just finished their meal. I tried to have lunch there a couple of Saturdays ago, but was also too late, as the lunch menu had closed at three.

But today, Colin and I went there for lunch.

The first thing you notice is the sheer number of staff. The second thing you notice – and I know this is a terribly superficial thing to notice – is that the staff are all incredibly good looking. If you like smartly-dressed dark-skinned young men with gorgeous accents, this is the place for you.

The menu features a lot of “traditional Italian fare”. Colin had the Involtini (Rolled Veal Stuffed with Breadcrumbs, Parmesan, Garlic and Peperonata) while I had Lamb Cutlets which were excellent. So good that I had absolutely no hesitation in picking them with fingers at the end to savour every morsel. The servings were neither large nor small: for lunch they were about right.

Besides I didn’t want to eat too much, as I needed to keep some space for desert. The desert menu is also “typically Italian” with lots of ricotta cake and tiramasu and the like. Ever since my experience with tiramasu last year in Melbourne – a near death experience with food poisoning – I’ve been somewhat cautious about tiramasu. But I overcame my fears, and gave it a go, and was pleasantly reassured that I can once again consume of my favourite deserts.

A nice touch was the older-style ornate Italian wine glasses.

Despite the weather, it was busy both indoors and out, and actually got a little bit noisy towards the end of lunch. Colin likened the atmosphere and decor to the Bayswater Brasserie of old.

The aforementioned attractive staff were excellent, offering just the right amount of attention.

Overall, a really good dining experience at reasonably good prices (about $20 for a main).

Otherwise, it’s been a stay-indoors kind of Saturday.

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