They wooed us with their 16-hour slow smoked BBQ beef with coleslaw and BBQ Sauce. That was the dish Ruby’s BBQ offered at Taste of Sydney earlier this year as part of Icon Park which won them the People’s Choice Award.
Rupert & Ruby, Icon Park, East Sydney
Now Rupert & Ruby, a fusion of Ruby’s BBQ and Fat Rupert’s in Bondi has taken up residence at Icon Park until December 24, 2014. The pop up venture’s kitchen is headed by Chef Eli Challenger who spends his time between the two venues.
Upstairs at Rupert & Ruby
Here at Icon Park’s location along Stanley Street, Rupert & Ruby look well settled in. Downstairs is a hub for diners and walk-ins with rustic exposed bricks, a long bar and intimate lighting. Upstairs, the vibe is more intimate with wooden-framed booths and greenery, retro lace and plastic tablecloth covered high tables and chilled music attracting small groups.
Even Rupert the dog from Bondi has settled in and brought other friends along. You can find Snoopy sleeping beneath a bathtub that belonged to Michael Hutchence, Brian Griffin from Family Guy with his Martini and Snowy from The Adventures of Tintin.
L-R: Quackery, Spazerac
The bar is headed by Ben Blair, whom we featured in our bartender profile series and he has created a cocktail list starting with sessionable drinks to the more boozy. Quackery makes for easy-sipping with a well-balanced mix of Stolen white rum, Campari, almond and orange syrup and lime served in a coupe glass. Served in a tumbler, the Spazerac has the looks of an innocent slushie but is delicious frappe of Wild Turkey Rye with Martell Cognac, oleo saccharum, bitters and absinthe garnished with a star anise and USA flag.
Ben Blair with Paperbarking Mad Cocktail
Paperbarking Mad takes it up a few notches with Tonka Bean 666 Vodka, a house-made spiced and clarified milk punch with saline syrup and paperbark smoke. The drink is sour, sweet and smoky with a lingering finish, one to order after dinner. The drinks list will soon expand to include some seasonal and Tiki cocktails.
Much like Fat Rupert’s, Rupert & Ruby’s dinner menu consists of plates designed to share. Sitting at the bar with a full view of the kitchen, you can’t help but notice the line-up of burgers continuously plated and served. But it’s not all burgers and fries here.
Emerald City Salad
The Emerald City Salad ($16) is a take on the Waldorf Salad with a grilled witlof, picked cauliflower, thin slices of crisp apple topped with toasted walnuts. The salad is a mix of the bitterness from the witlof with the sweetness from the apples and acid from the vinegar and is testament that you can make friends with salad.
Beetroot Cured Salmon
The Beetroot Cured Salmon ($17) comes highly recommended. Here it comes with shaved fennel, thinly-sliced pickled red onions, grilled leeks for smokiness and a delicious house-made dill labneh topped with salmon caviar.
A Mountain of Fried Chicken
The Fried Chicken ($26), which also features on the menu at Fat Rupert’s, is difficult to resist. The dish is a mountain of tender and succulent bird cooked with buttermilk, honey butter, secret spices and hiding coleslaw in the centre.
But it is the BBQ Prawns ($28) that steal the show. This go-to dish has succulent king green prawns in a pool of creamy polenta topped with a piquant Cajun BBQ sauce and pork rinds which add texture and crunch.
Grilled Broad Beans with Pecorino
This is a sensational dish and the smoky Grilled Broad Beans with Pecorino and lemon juice are all you need as accompaniment.
Should you feel like dessert ($15), the choice is a homely Carrot Cake with hickory smoked cream cheese icing,
and Cheesecake with flavours that change weekly.
Snoopy Beneath Michael Hutchence’s Bathtub
Rupert & Ruby is open for breakfast and lunch daily with an all-day burger menu. Dinner is from Tuesday through to Saturday but get in quick before the pop up ends on Christmas Eve.
Photography © by Gourmantic – Copyright: All rights reserved.
Rupert & Ruby
78 Stanley St East Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 7901 0396
Monday 7am – 3pm
Tuesday to Friday 7am – midnight
Saturday 8am – midnight
Sunday 8am – 5pm
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