Le Beaujolais Nouveau at Moncur Terrace

All over France, when the clock ticks over into the third Thursday of every November, it is proclaimed that le Beaujolais nouveau est arrivé! Celebrations spread to other parts of the world, and with the new vintage flown, in people embrace the opportunity to indulge in a little tipple.

Moncur Terrace, Bistro Moncur’s younger sibling, part of the Woollahra Hotel and of the Damien Pignolet fame, is a long-time favourite. The terrace was celebrating the arrival by offering a canapé and a glass of the Georges Duboeuf Nouveau Beaujolais at the bar or a main course matched with a glass of the 2009 vintage.

Moncur Terrace - Beaujolais Nouveau and menu

We arrived a little later than anticipated and as the restaurant does not take bookings, there was a customary wait before we could be given a table. But with an impressive bar indoors spilling onto the terrace area, time often flies with a good cocktail or glass of bubbly.

Half an hour later, we were shown to our table, this time at the end of the bar in the inside area. Service was quick and cheerful and in no time we were toasting the 2009 vintage.

Beaujolais Nouveau is a vin de primeur made from Gamay grapes. It is fermented for a few weeks before it is bottled and released. It is meant to be served frais, or lightly chilled to accentuate the fruity taste, though I have had it served at room temperature one time in France, not withstanding November being a cold month. It is a lightweight and young wine that should be consumed right away and would not benefit much from cellaring.

At Moncur Terrace, once ordered, the dishes don’t take too long before they are served. The menu changes offering a choice of light starters such as the salt cod brandade croquettes with aioli, salads, pizzas and a good choice of main courses with the ubiquitous Wagyu beef burger with fries.

Moncur Terrace - grilled Rangers Valley rump

We ordered the grilled 300 day grain fed Rangers Valley rump with Bordelaise butter and French fries. The sizeable chunk of meat was cooked as ordered, medium, lightly dressed with the buttery sauce. The meat was tender and juicy, the fries crispy with the right amount of salt, worthy of stealing a few when your partner isn’t watching.

Moncur Terrace - grilled quail

The grilled quail with chickpeas, chorizo, cracked green olives and tomatoes was the choice of main course that was paired with the Beaujolais Nouveau. The combination of flavours and textures in the dish worked well together without overpowering the taste of the quail. The wine was a good match and while it was an enjoyable meal, I had one gripe. The serving size was too small for a main course. Once you remove the accoutrements you are left with four tiny pieces of the bird. Overall it was nowhere near as filling as other main courses I have eaten there in the past.

We opted out of dessert this time but on previous occasions we have enjoyed the specials that are on offer or as a light alternative, the three ices with biscotti, particularly on a balmy summer evening.

The ambience at Moncur Terrace is casual, relaxed and the clientele contributes an informal chic vibe. Although the restaurant has indoor seating, the terrace is the place to be, though keep in mind that it caters for smokers.

Whether you are at the outdoor bar, or sitting alfresco under the retractable awning, the soft lighting and bamboo shoots surrounding the walls create a summery feel, intimate at times as if you are dining in somebody’s elegant backyard. In winter, outdoor heaters are used but I advise laying your coat on the stainless steel chairs before you sit down as they are often too cold for comfort.

Moncur Terrace
116 Queen St
Woollahra NSW 2025


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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is the Founder/Editor of popular online magazine Gourmantic and Cocktails & Bars, a website dedicated to cocktail culture and the discerning drinker. She is named in Australian Bartender Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential List since 2013, is a member of The Academy responsible for judging the World’s 50 Best Bars. She has also judged the inaugural Australasian Whisky Awards and various national cocktail competitions.


  • Hello, first time poster here.  Found this site looking for Bistro Moncur.  Is this the same place or is it something new ?  Was thinking of going to celebrate my wife’s birthday next week.  Thanks for the photos, I will definitely order the Rump, not sure about what my wife will have however.  Is the service good here or is it rushed, we want to linger longer given a birthday, Cheers Pete

    • Peter: Hi Pete and welcome 🙂
      Bistro Moncur is still there, this is the Woollahra hotel’s newer venture, just round the corner on Queen Street. The place has a good vibe whether it’s for two people or a small group and although they are quick to serve the food, staff have never pushed us into leaving early. We’ve had many enjoyable and lingering meals there. And one can always retire to the bar for an after dinner drink. I hope you enjoy celebrating the occasion.

  • So wait – did you drink all those cocktails  in a half an hour?  That would be one more impressive detail of your trip 🙂
    The food looks amazing and the atmosphere sounds fantastic.  Out of curiosity though – on a scale of 1 (easy) to 10 (difficult) – how hard was it to pass up dessert?

    • Justin: The Margarita was enjoyed on another day. But the bubbly and later the Beaujolais Nouveau were on the same night. Moderate, by usual standards 🙂
      On that evening, it was a 5, mainly due to it being a little late. I was tempted by the Chocolate ‘Cream – Between’ with Hazelnut & Candied Peel Ice Cream