Harpoon Harry brings authentic cuisine from the American South with Chef Morgan McGlone at the helm as resident culinary curator.
McGlone of Belle’s Hot Chicken fame in Melbourne and Sydney, showcases authentic dishes from the South and imbues them with wonderful flavours of smoke and BBQ, flavours that reflect the experience gained while cooking in Charlestown and Nashville. Add to this extensive pickling and fermenting, of which you can see the rows of jars on the ground floor, that are made to enhance the dishes and you have a menu that is both authentic and individual.
While the food is from the South, the decor still remains, at present, as its previous Latin dining incarnation. Tables are set with linen giving a touch of old world elegance far removed from the industrial fitouts that have been the craze. While dishes may be shared that is not the focus of what is happening here.
There is a concise cocktail list which which harks back to the South in flavours and freshness which awaken the palate prior to food arriving or may even complement the meal. The wine list brings together smaller and sustainable growers with wines that complement the dishes. Of course we are in the South, so there is bourbon.
For those who know bourbon and for those on the road to discovery, there is the bourbon trolley with favourites such as Michter’s Bourbon and High West, some rare with Old Van Winkle 10yo and Pappy Van Winkle 20yo and Australian representation with White Rye from Archie Rose and expressions from Melbourne Moonshine of Sweet Tea and Sour Mash.
The Sweet Tea ($17) is light and refreshing made with Melbourne Moonshine Sweet Tea. This julep drink is well balanced and finishes with the tannins from the tea.
The Pecan ($17) with Michters Rye, Amaro Montenegro and pecan orgeat has a subtle sweetness from the rye with the nuttiness of the pecan there to be savoured but not overpowering the drink.
Parker House Rolls with Lard Butter
The Parker House Rolls with Lard Butter ($1 each), are rolls with a history that dates back to the late 1800’s in Boston, are light fluffy buns that are slightly sweet with a crisp outside that are served with Lard Butter. These are very tasty and moreish.
Beef Tartare, Smoked Oyster, Parsley, Benne Cracker
This perfectly seasoned Beef Tartare with Smoked Oyster, Parsley and Benne Cracker ($22) is a dish that must be tried. The tartare has been prepared in small pieces and goes to another level when tasted with the oyster sauce that has the right level of smoke and is beautifully creamy. Served alongside is a Benne Cracker which is made of oatmeal and ground sesame seed and originates from Senegal and made its way to America in the early days of the colony.
St Louis Pork Ribs, Harrys BBQ Sauce, Crisp Pigs Skins
These St Louis Pork Ribs with Harrys BBQ Sauce and Crisp Pigs Skins ($24) are smoked and served with the meat tender on the bone but not falling off it at sight. This is the way they are served in the South. The meat has that wonderful smoke flavour served with a house made BBQ sauce which packs a little heat and the crispy pig skins are so light and very crispy. Don’t stand on ceremony, pick up those ribs to make sure you have every morsel of meat.
Shrimp and Grits
Shrimp and Grits ($33) is getting as traditional as you can with Southern food with grits being a staple comfort food in the South. Here they are served with spicy prawns that deliver a good kick of heat and Spanish sausage. The sauce in the dish is a smooth prawn bisque with hot pepper sauce and some lemon juice. The prawns are tender and full of flavour while the grits, made from ground corn, is silky smooth.
Riverine Pork Chop, Five hour Cabbage, Sauce Gastrique
The Riverine Pork Chop with Five hour Cabbage and Sauce Gastrique ($37) is a signature of the house with the pork beautifully pink and tender with subtle smoke after being basted with sauce gastrique then grilled over cherry wood and iron bark. The cabbage adds a flavour dimension and is slow cooked over the grill and basted with apple cider vinegar.
The side of Succotash ($8) is served warm in cast iron pot. The mix of white corn hominy, black eyed peas and zucchini is enhanced by the flavours of the tarragon and dill sauce which burst onto the palate.
Vanilla Pound Cake, Chocolate Ganache, Rhubarb Jus
Not on the menu is the Vanilla pound cake with chocolate ganache and rhubarb jus. Just make sure to have a bit of each together when you eat to have that wonderful mix of flavours and textures. A pound cake refers to the ingredients of flour, butter, eggs, and sugar all being in equal ratio and was historically made with the the measurements being one pound of each.
Fried Apple Pie, Cinnamon Ice Cream
This is what a Fried Apple Pie with Cinnamon Ice Cream ($12) i all about. Large pieces of cubed apples cooked in cinnamon in a crisp pastry shell with apple compote and ice cream that is just oh so satisfying.
Harpoon Harry is Southern American cuisine that has not been served in Sydney before like this. The dishes are generous with flavours that take you to somewhere new and exciting. To go with the food is the almost Southern hospitality that the dining room team brings. From when you arrive and are taken to your table, the service is friendly and knowledgeable in the dishes presented and in the wine list.
Harpoon Harry brings all this together with a relaxed attitude that will have you back time and time again.
Hotel Harry, Level 1
40 – 44 Wentworth Ave
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Wed – Sat from 6pm
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