14 Nov 2016
The New Narnia For Foodies Has Arrived
Two worlds collide when you walk into the re-vamped industrial space of the old Rozelle Tramsheds. Since the last tram service took place in 1961, the shell of it is a shed built in 1904 that spent many years housing retired trams. 2016 saw it’s revival of the most glorious kind. A stunning makeover has lovingly transformed this building into a modern industrial space that now hosts a playground for lovers of top notch food & wine.
For over 55 years this space lay dormant. Lucky perhaps, that in 2013 development giant Mirvac began transforming the adjacent Harold Park Paceway site into a 1200 apartment development, and included the dilapidated tram sheds in their plans. The vibrant food hub now includes a family owned artisan version of Supermarket IGA, a hairdresser, nail bar, a bottle shop and medical centre alongside a dozen of Sydney’s most loved cafes and restaurants. Re-opening on September 22nd this year there are now 12 food retailers, including new installments from the teams behind La Bodega & Porteño (and too many more to list), A Tavola, The Little Marionette, Tokyo Bird, Belle’s Hot Chicken and what’s a food court without gelato gods Messina?
Fish & Co
Sustainable seafood eatery Fish & Co serve responsibly sourced seafood. An easy drinking Prosecco perfectly accompanies our delicious lobster roll ($26). Gently tossed in spices and grilled to tender perfection, the lobster is served on a soft roll with a side salad and crunchy-on-the-outside sweet potato fries. Armed with an entourage on my 2nd visit just days later, my wino wine connoisseur friend opts for wine by the litre. The zesty and floral Riesling that costs just $47 is a very pleasant surprise. There’s so much of the smooth and rich seafood pâté that even with an overly generous layer on each slice of crusty sourdough we end up with leftover pâté. (Don’t worry – we ate it all!) Crunchy & tender calamari rings come with a with a tangy garlic mayonnaise whilst crisp fried fish cakes are accompanied by a chilli lime dipping sauce.
The second bottle of wine calls out the mains. Fish of the day is mullet, an oily, strong flavoured fish which is perfectly pan fried and comes with a choice of sides. Crowd-pleasing Fish & Chips comes in the shape of NZ Hoki, three thick cut, finger-shaped fillets with well salted blonde chips. But for me, salmon is like crack: if it’s on the menu, I have to have it. A perfectly cooked thick cut fillet has crisped skin and a translucent centre. The accompanying beetroot pesto has a wonderful natural sweetness to cut through the oily flesh and there’s plenty of it, providing a great partner for the soft centred dill potatoes. Service here is smooth and effortless
A visit to Bodega 1904 across the walkway proves equally fruitful. It’s the same casual, cool service you get at all the team’s other ventures that’re so endearing and just…. well, groovy. Staff are consistently well trained to know the menu and wines inside out and generally look like characters you’d like to pull up a bar stool next to. Alternatively, book a seat at the bar and just hang out with them anyway, whilst they guide you through the quirky tapas menu. A lean and tender rump tartare with creme fraiche, rocket, bottarga and crispy shallots is an early peak in the menu and possibly one of the best tartare’s I’ve tasted. Spiced blood cake is well seasoned and a generous serve, and perfectly partnered with the pickled Kohlrabi, courgette, apple and cucumber salad. We finish with the steamed bass groper which is complemented by a gently curried abalone sauce, letting the mild & oily fish shine.
After seeing most of the options leaving the kitchen area beside us all throughout service, there is no point in fighting the fact that we will order one. The ginger malt loaf with brown butter ice cream is a perfect finish to a really fun meal and tastes like Christmas, meaning we leave in a celebratory mood.
Don’t miss this!
As you explore the rest of the space, don’t miss the original tram that has been restored to former glory, parked near the main entrance of the building. Tram No 1995 was constructed between 1934 and 36 and provided 6 years of service before retiring in the Rozelle Depot in 1961. On the way out, stroll through the most gourmet IGA you’ll find in the city, or take home an amazing bottle of wine you just had at Bodega from the adjacent boutique wine cellar.
These tram sheds really are a one-stop-shop for all your foodie needs and desires that won’t be going out of fashion any time soon.