Berowra Waters Inn, Sydney
After our sailing trip in New Caledonia over Christmas we spent a few days staying on the river at Berowra Waters. Awesome spot, and just perfect for total relaxation. I found the location when I was looking for places to go for lunch by seaplane from Sydney and saw that Berowra Waters Inn was a recommended trip.
Long story short, the inn has a rather convoluted past with a few dramas and changes of fortunes (this is maybe why the Short History section of their website is currently disabled). But it’s a new year in 2013 and, fingers crossed, the restaurant in now entering a more stable phase of existence.
We thoroughly enjoyed the food. It was beautifully presented, intricate and very tasty. You can see the full menu in the previous post to see what we were able to savour.
The slow cooked beef rib was superb, and topped the beef at the Quay the next night, and the cheese course was inspired. I never realized that Australia had such fantastic cheeses. As good as anything you’ll find in France or the UK.
We opted for the wine pairing with the dinner and weren’t disappointed. All really good Aussie wines that we would never have known about otherwise.
The wines really set some of the dishes alight in fact, so full marks to the sommelier, a fiercely enthusiastic Aussie chick. The only one that didn’t catch my fancy was the Topaque – sorry, but the Hungarians can’t be beaten when it comes to Tokaji.
The service was very good, friendly etc etc. The sommelier forgot to bring us one of the wines for the second course and was mortified. They slowed down service so we could enjoy the glass, and gave us the cheese course in recompense which was worth AU$70. A very sweet thing to do and certainly an overcompensation that was much appreciated as the course was delicious.
The ONLY thing I would say about the service is that the evening felt rather serious. Food was introduced with reverence and hushed tones, and felt a bit like a performance that wasn’t suitable for this bushland restaurant. This is Australia after all, and I was expecting a little more camaraderie with the wait staff. You don’t need to have such formal service in order to be taken seriously as a fine dinning establishment, which is what I felt might be behind this.
The restaurant faces the creek and floor to ceiling windows overlook the Hawkesbury River and cliffs opposite. It’s a lovely space and not at all cluttered with tables. Light, airy and modern.
There is one six course set menu on offer with optional cheese course and wine matching. The menu is AU$165 and with the wine pairing it rises to $240.
If you have any allergies or special requirements then let them know when you book, although they asked us as a matter of course when we made the reservation.
The restaurant is only open at weekends. Friday night, and then Saturday and Sunday lunch and dinner. Diners generally arrive by car and park at the Berowra Waters Marina before being brought by the restaurant’s boat downriver to the site. It is not accessible by car.
You can also take a seaplane from Sydney for lunch, or be picked up by the restaurant’s boat if you are staying in Berowra Waters like we were (remember to leave a light on in the porch, else you’ll be struggling to find your house. You live and learn…)
Comparing the meal to The Quay in Sydney the next night, I think the AU$240 including wine matching was worth every penny. It was a great meal and if only they’d have lightened up a little then it would also have been a fun meal.