Friday, March 12, 2010

Sydney 2010: bills 2, Surry Hills


For me, a trip to Sydney is not complete without a trip to one of Bill Granger's cafes. (See previous posts for example: bills 2 in 2005; bills 1, 2 AND 3 in 2006).

bills 2
359 Crown St
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Ph: (02) 9360-4762
Website

We came here on a Saturday morning at about 11:30. It was a short but strenuous walk from Central station - Googlemaps doesn't show you just how hilly Surry Hills is! As usual, it was packed, and we had to wait 40 minutes for a table. The captain was really nice, and kept apologising that the table before us just wouldn't leave, even after they'd paid their bill! Grrr.

Anyhoo, after a wait in the nice warm Sydney weather, we got a table outside and promptly ordered. You'll have to forgive me; I've forgotten what all the prices were, and I have misplaced the receipt we got. Overall it was pretty decently priced by Sydney standards, which translates as "moderately expensive" by Melbourne standards, hehe.

I had a cappuccino, which looked great...

... but unfortunately didn't taste too good. The coffee was neither rich nor full bodied. I guess we are spoiled by the quality of coffee here in Melbourne!

By this time, they had stopped serving breakfast, but luckily for us there is a section on the menu of "bills classics", which are available all the time. The first 3 dishes are all bills classics, and for non-Sydneysiders, the recipes are all in Bill's first book, Sydney Food.

Scrambled eggs with toast and smoked salmon. (Portions seem to have gotten smaller since last time - our boy Dan reported he was still hungry afterwards).

Coconut bread - a light meal for Sandra, who wasn't up for a big lunch. She reportedly liked the bread, but I tried a bite and foud it slightly heavy for my tastes.
An's favourite: ricotta hotcakes with banana and honeycomb butter. AHEM. What a plate of awesomeness!

Both myself and Di ordered a chicken club - chicken, bacon, tomatoes, rocket and avocado mayo on baguette. Sounded great, and looked pretty good too!

Unfortunately, it was one of the greasiest sandwiches I have ever eaten. When I picked it up, the bottom half of the bread was all soaked through with grease and kinda disgusting.

That was mine, but Di's was the same - soaked through with bacon/chicken grease.

It didn't help that the bread was pappy, soft and white, not the robust crunchy baguette I was hoping for. After such a long wait for our table, I didn't want to send it back. I just ate the filling and the top piece of bread with a knife and fork. I should so just have ordered a cake from the counter, or the hotcakes!

Bills 2 seems to have dropped standard slightly since our last visit, but it is still worth a visit for the echt Sydney experience. My recommendation though, is to get there early, and stick to the classics!

Bills on Urbanspoon

5 comments:

julie said...

Oh, what a mixed experience :(
The hotcakes look fab but the sandwich looks less than decent. I was looking forward to decadent and lush bill food, so am going to read your old posts.

Sorry it wasn't up to your expectations.

Mark @ Cafe Campana said...

It is interesting that you weren't totally satisfied by your visit. The photos make everything look so great. Breakfast foods are awesome.

SK said...

Would have followed your friend with the coconut bread. Mmmm . . coconut bread.

Iron Chef Shellie said...

I've made the coconut bread before, but I really want to make the hotcakes!

Lisa Roberts said...

Hm.