Saturday, August 11, 2012

Top of the Pop(up)s

On Monday night we had a very unique experience at Bar H, a little stylish contemporary bar in Surry Hills. Tonight wasn't a normal night there but one when the kitchen was taken over by Mindy, Audra and Kylie - our favourite MasterChef girls! I was ecstatic to get a booking after feeling like I had left it a bit late for the "first in best dressed" booking policy so Audra's confirmation made my day! And how glad I was - such a fun evening and great food. It is a strange thing meeting the MasterChef girls. We know them so well like friends we have shared every evening for the last few months with so it didn't feel surprising when we walked in and there was Audra greeting everyone while Mindy and Kylie smiled and cooked in the open plan kitchen.

The service was fantastic and drinks were here in no time for my hubbie and I to toast to the meal to come. The little bowl of caramelised nuts and tiny crispy fish reminded me of snacks in the Philippines and Japan so I couldn't stop going back for another nibble! The girls greeted everyone and announced a family style menu. First up was a 3 pepper chicken served in a bag for everyone to dig in. The pepper hit was great and what succulent pieces of meat. We polished off our bag in no time and soon it was an amazing slow cooked beef short ribs in an Asian sauce with some Gai lan stir fried with garlic and chilli - some of our favourite flavour combinations. No sooner had we polished off the beef, but a Mapo Tofu (Grandmothers tofu) was presented. It looked fabulous, but I was worried I was going to have to eat this one alone, as Cam isn't a big tofu fan. I gave him a bit to try and he was hooked! The spiciness with the Chinese sausage and pork mince complemented the tofu perfectly and we finished our plate.

With our mouths still with that slight chilli burn, we were presented with an individual dessert with a number of components. There was a lychee granita - so sherbetty and with such great lychee flavour that it cleansed the palate beautifully before the black sesame ice cream and the coconut tapioca with fried won ton slivers to give a crispy texture. All the flavours worked so well as a great end to a fabulous meal - or so we thought!

Just before we got kicked out so they could prepare for the next sitting finally came a Szechuan Salt Chocolate Truffle and a home made fortune cookie! Now it truly was the end, and the girls calmly saw everyone off before I'm sure they rushed back to the stove to prepare for the next round!

It really was a night to remember, the food, the wonderful hostesses and the fun!

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