Truffle Pig Watering Holes

Best places for a drink….. or 10….

Sydney’s Best Pub Meals…

The Courthouse Hotel – New Town

I love new town it reminds me of being in London with the grubby streets lined with coloured terraces, people dressed in weird clothes and an eclectic mix of eating options and amazing pubs. The best one being The Courthouse Hotel, or “the courty” as the cool kids are calling it. If you’re from the inner-west, enjoy beer, pinball or look like a member of Kings of Leon, you will fit right in here. Home to a huge beer garden, a front bar, rooms filled with vintage furniture (one entirely dedicated to pinball) and some great pub grub! The steaks are great quality for the price, $16 will get you a big bit of beef, chips, perfectly steamed dreams and mushroom sauce. Other items include the stock standard burgers, nachos and chicken parmy, all can be enjoyed while playing bingo, watching crab races or connect four on different nights of the week.

The Courthouse Hotel – 202 Australia, St Newtown 2042

Courthouse Hotel on Urbanspoon

Four in Hand, Paddington

The Four in Hand is arguably Paddington’s best pub thanks to its bustling atmosphere, cosy interior but most importantly its renowned restaurant. Awarded with several prestigious ‘hats’ and always on Australia’s best restaurants lists, Four in Hand is not to be missed. If dining with a group, you can’t go past the delicious suckling pig served whole with all the trimmings and crackling that puts all other crackling to shame. If you can’t rustle up the crowd, never fear, the butter poached chicken with ham broth or licorice braised beef brisket will have you more than satisfied.
The Four in Hand Hotel – 105 Sutherland St, Paddington NSW 2021

Four in Hand on Urbanspoon

Grand National, Paddington

You go to the city to see sights, you go to Bondi to see a beach and you go to Paddington to go to a pub. The streets are lined with them and you are spoilt for choice when it comes to great pub meals while surrounded by lively atmosphere and cheerful drunks. The Grand National (Grand Nash) is on a cosy, tree lined corner of Underwood and Elizabeth Streets and is perfect for a rainy day, or any day you craving some substantial comfort food. You can never go wrong when ordering one of their succulent steaks or for something a little more adventurous there is a tasty traditional Irish stew or chunky steak and pepper pie.

The Grand National Hotel  – 161 Underwood Street, Paddington NSW

Grand National on Urbanspoon

The Beresford, Surry Hills

The Beresford is an unassuming Surry Hills venue with daggy, drab yellow tiles out the front and usually homeless, junkie rif raf out the front (it is close to a half way home). But inside in an oasis and one pimping pub! The front bar is large and looks like your everyday pub, out the back is sleek, dark, open and home to the restaurant and one of the nicest beer gardens I been too, and there have been to a few. There is greenery and pot plants adorning every wall, plenty of seating options, fairy lights and a great atmosphere. The restaurant serves fancy pub food with an Italian twist – thin crust pizzas, Tuscan style cured meats, cheese plate or a Wagyu Flank steak with parsley-garlic gremolata and polenta chips. The outdoor beer garden is the perfect spot to enjoy a drink, meal and a good time, especially now it is coming into summmer – get in early to get a seat!

The Beresford Hotel – 354 Bourke Street, Surry Hills, 2010

The Beresford Hotel on Urbanspoon

The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel, The Rocks

This ye old English pub is tucked up behind The Rocks is on one of the prettiest corners of the whole city. Thankfully, it is right by my office, so you can find me here often enjoying a Friday lunch accompanied by one of their house-brewed beers on a regular basis. The menu isn’t filled your typical pub food although you will find a few old favourites. Other exotic items include the himalayan spiced kingfish curry or the pork and prawn momo coated in soy, lime and chilli. Who said going to the pub had to be unhealthy? …. Then comes the amazing beer list…

The Lord Nelson Hotel  – 19 Kent Street, The Rocks NSW

Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel on Urbanspoon

Watson Bay Hotel, Watsons Bay
Formerly a drap, run down pub is now one of the hottest spots to enjoy a meal, drinks and arguably the best view in the city stretching over the harbour with the city sky line, opera house and harbour bridge in sight. The Watson Bay hotel has come to life with a refurb, outdoor dining ideal for a sunny day and a delicious menu. Seafood is the leading lady of this menu featuring crowd favourites like a bucket of prawns, DIY fish tacos, Sydney Rock Oysters and good old fashioned fish and chips. For those meat lovers, never fear, The “Watto Burger” will keep those hunger pains at bay – this HUGE beast is a no frills cheese burger cooked to pinky perfection and served with beer battered fries. If all that food puts you into a food coma, you can check into one of the hotel’s newly renovated rooms… I can think of worse places to spend the night!

The Watson Bay Hotel – 1 Military Road, Watsons Bay NSW 2030

The Local Taphouse on Urbanspoon

The Local Taphouse, Darlinghurst
The Local Taphouse, or ‘The Local’ is a haven for beer enthusiasts, lovers and drinkers alike, and of course those looking to have a meal between drinks. With more than 100 beers available you won’t find it hard to find tasty ale to quench your thirsty, or a meal to eliminate those hunger pains. The bar menu is full of flavoursome snacks like buffalo wings with creamy blue cheese sauce, spiced apple baked pork crackling and sliders. For those wanting something more substantial there are classics like chicken schniztel, a bacon and beef burger or keeping in the beer theme there is a ridiculously good apple cider braised pork belly cooked for 8 hours and served with sauerkraut and roasted apples…. mmmmm……

The Local Taphouse – 122 Flinders St  Darlinghurst NSW 2010

The Local Taphouse on Urbanspoon

Oink oink,

Truffle Pig.

P.s this is an evolving list …. all pub food suggestions are more than welcome… and I am happy to do the market research!

Ventuno ….


Nestled into one of Walsh Bay’s iconic wharfs, Ventuno is a peaceful, alfresco Italian eatery removed from the concrete

jungle of the neighbouring CBD. With stunning views of the harbour, it is the perfect venue for a long, lazy lunch filled with authentic food, great wine and boutique beers.

Ventuno is only a hop, skip and trot away from the famous Circular Quay, a tourist trap known for the demise of piggy banks. But just around the corner from this tourist hot spot, you can find Ventuno which is a secret gem loved by locals and a rare place where you can enjoy a fantastic meal on the water’s front without the crazy price tag.

The atmosphere and service are relaxed thanks to the friendly staff and an abundance of outdoor dining where you can watch the world and boats go by. They can accommodate large groups, private functions, romantic dinners or a place for people to enjoy a drink or two while enjoying a platter of perfectly prepared food.

The menu epitomizes fine Italian eating with a huge range of anti-pasta boards to choose from which include crowd favourites like meat balls, aranchini, calamari, house-baked break, cured meats and Italian cheeses. For main course, pizza and pasta take centre stage. The pizzas are thin, crisp and topped with simple, quality ingredients. The pastas include classics with a twist like the carbonara tartufata made with handmade rolled fusilli pasta with pancetta, eggs and parmesan truffle paste.

The Bitter:
The Sweet: I am a sucker for carbonara, and this would have to be one of the best I tried (can probably attribute that to the truffle of course!)
The Damage: No more than $40 for a meal and a glass of wine.

Oink oink,
Truffle Pig.

Ventuno on Urbanspoon

Tales of a Truffle Pig – A Food, Travel & Lifestyle Blog Written by Hannah Lewis – Sydney, Australia

The Botanist….

The Botanist….

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The team behind Bondi Hardware have brought the small bar scene to the lower north shore with The Botanist at Kirribilli. The similarities between the two are blindingly obvious – exposed bricks, hanging pot plants and candling melting all over henricks gin bottles. But if the forumula works, why fix it? I love both venues, and has much as my friends who live ‘OTB’ (that is code for Over The Bridge for those non-Sydney folk) would hate to admit it, The Botanist is a little slice of Bondi on the North, and that is why it is so popular!

Globetrotting botanist Gerard Fothergill was the former resident of the venue and has been the inspiration of the name, logo, flora filled interior and menu which features dishes and drinks inspired from different corners of the world. The menus, both food and drink, are designed for sharing with cocktails made by the jug full and muddled with exotic ingredients from the garden such as  berry and cucumber pimms or “Grandma’s Vase” filled with grape fruit.

The stand out dishes are the tacos and sliders, both served in batches of four and are designed for sharing. Taco toppings include tender marinated beef with melted queso and grilled fish with a spicy baha sauce. The classic beef and pickle slider never disappoints but for those looking for a less traditional dish, you can’t go past the pulled pork burger with apple sauce and braised red cabbage. Other dishes include stir fried Szechuan prawns, build-your-own cheese board and a slow roasted lamb salad laden in hummus and minted yoghurt.

The Botanist is well loved by locals and visitors alike thanks to is bustling atmosphere, cosy and quirky interior and faultless food, so book ahead, you won’t be disappointed. The service is friendly, although a little frantic but were accommodating when I hadn’t

The Bitter: It is loud and a bit cramped

The Sweet: Beef tacos with melted cheeeese, yes pleeeease

The damange: a couple of cocktails and enough food to fill you will set you back about $50pp

Oink Oink,

Truffle Pig.


The Botanist Kirribilli on Urbanspoon

Tales of a Truffle Pig – A Food, Travel & Lifestyle Blog Written by Hannah Lewis – Sydney, Australia

The Park Pop Up Bar ….

The Park Pop Up Bar

As the temperature drops I am holding onto dear life to every bit of warmth and sunshine that is left. There is no better place to do this than in Sydney’s latest pop up bar, The Park.

The pack from Pelicano and The Island have joined forced and are responsible for this this garden delight found inside Centennial Park next to the Paddington entry. It is dog friendly, kid friendly but most of all, it is fun. This fun is facilitated by huge cocktails jugs that are so big you can almost swim in them, and wheel barrows full of peronis. So, pack the bags, head for the park and settle in for a delicious night of cheese boards, roasted pork and good times.

The Park pop up bar is open Wednesday to Friday from midday until 10pm and will shut shop on June 2.

Oink Oink,

Truffle Pig.

New Year, New Beer – March…

You will notice that this month I went to the lovely little city, Adelaide, home to Coopers beer which was enjoyed over the weekend of festivals. WOMad and The Fringe were so much fun; I am already looking forward to next year. I also had the pleasure of attending my first Taste festival and I it definitely won’t be my last – I had an awesome day, which turned into night tasting some of the best food and wine from across the world (lots of African beer this month!). Beers up!

1.       Sapporo, JAP – an iconic beer form the land of great food and in this case, great beer

2.       Thomas Coopers Selection, SA – Good ‘ol fashioned pale ale

3.       Coopers 62, SA – dense, rich and I couldn’t drink 62 of them

4.       Coopers 5 Seeds, SA – Another variation of a much loved SA Great brewery

5.       Coopers Clear, SA – Just like the rest of the Coopers family, only clear

6.       Dr Tims, SA – Drinking Tim out of a tinny – you don’t get much more aussie than that!

7.       The Hills Cider Company, SA – Made from freshly picked fruit from the Adeliade Hills, no complaints here

8.       Pacifico Clara Cerveza, MEX – A happy, hoppy pilsner beer

9.       Tusker African Lager Beer, KEN – I like the beer more than I like tusking

10.   Tusker Malt Lager, KEN – Made from 100% African ingredients, it was refreshing as the salesman himself (legend!)

11.   Sail & Anchor Boats Bind Amber Ale, WA – great branding and taste

12.   Sail & Anchor Larks Foot Golden Ale, WA – awesome name, and my favourite from this brewer

13.   Sail & Anchor Monkey Fist Pale Ale, WA – The flavour is far better than a fist to the trotter

14.   Wiked Cider, QLD – another boutique apple cider on the market… still not sick of them!

15.   Sail & Anchor, WA –

16.   Crabbies Spiced Orange Ginger Beer – a beer meets vodka cruise flavour – it gets my vote!

17.   Reef Blonde, QLD – blondes have more fun, even when they are beer

18.   Blue Sky Pilsner, QLD – Award winning, clean refreshing taste

19.   FNQ Lager, QLD – Nothin’ bogan about this brand, other than the taste of this beer

20.   Cairns Gold, QLD – Robust flavours, but not flavours for me

21.   ELK Pear Cider – Sweeeeeeet, far too sweet for this little piggy

22.   Hang Man Pale Ale by The Rocks Brewing Company, SYD – good balance of hanging between bitter and sweet

23.   Convict Lager by The Rocks Brewing Company, SYD – Dark, brooding, just like a convict

24.   Boxer Red Ale by The Rocks Brewing Company, SYD – Punches some chocolatey flavours

25.   Australian Beer Company Cider – I think I have found a new fridge staple, freshingly delicious!

26.   Balmain Brewery Pale Ale, SYD – Pales in comparison to other pale ales

27.   Balmain Brewery Pilsner, SYD – Not to bitter and even tastes a little nutty

28.   ELK Cider Berries & Lime, VIC – Tasting more berries than I am lime, great on ice but too sweet to repeat

29.   Grand Ridge Natural Blonde, VIC – Taste a little like coriander… which I love!

30.   Grand Ridge Wheat Beer, VIC – heavy and, you guessed it, wheat!

31.   Grand Bridge Pale Ale, VIC – Smooth, refreshing and full of flavour

Oink oink

Truffle Pig.