The stinking hot Sydney weather thwarted last night's plans to stop by Misschu’s Tuckshop in Darlinghurst and have a quick bite to eat after work. I just couldn’t face the thought of schlepping from Redfern to Darlinghurst and then sitting on a little stool on the sidewalk to eat my fare. I was desperate to give Misschu’s a try, but not desperate enough to risk heatstroke.
As I trudged through the heat to the train station to head home I remembered that Misschu’s had recently opened up at the Opera Kitchen, along with a small selection of the who’s who of Australian eateries. It’s a far cry from the street vendor inspired Darlinghurst location where you order through a hole-in-the-wall window complete with bamboo awning, but it means I could give Misschu’s a try at least (and hopefully there would be a breeze - there wasn't, just for the record).
The Opera Kitchen is a bit like a (very) fancy food court...with a million dollar view. Along with Misschu, you can choose to sample the delights from Bécasse Bakery, Charlie & Co Burgers, Cloudy Bay Fish Co and Kenji Sushi all whilst enjoying drink from the bar and gazing out over the harbour.
On a day when it’s not pushing 40 degrees I think the Opera Kitchen would be a wonderful place to eat...last night however was another story. Even hiding under the umbrella’s lining the Opera House’s concourse I felt like I was melting. Grown men were walking by clutching ice-cream cones like they're life bouy’s. Tourists sat like stunned mullets in the heat and the staff at the Opera Kitchen all look wilted and exhausted from the day’s heatwave.
I decided to stay and give Misschu’s a try however, as my alternative was to go home and cook dinner in my stinking hot kitchen. No thanks.
All of the eateries share a menu and you simply place your order at the shared cash registered. When your food is ready the wait staff bring it over to you (they'll even guard your food from lurking seagulls if you're off taking photos like I was). If you like you could sample something from each of the restaurants (asides from Kenji, who have their own sushi bar space and tables reserved for their customers).
I've perused the online menu for Misschu’s Tuckshop in Darlinghurst more times than I can to remember in preparation for my first visit. The first thing I notice is that the Misschu's with a View offerings at Opera Kitchen are more expensive, but I guess you're paying for the view. There's also less opportunity to order single items, which is a bit of a bummer if you're eating on your own like I am.
In the end I settled on an order of Peking Duck Pancakes, and two steamed buns that I could order singularly. My total bill comes to $19.00.
I'm not sure what is in the Steamed Vegetarian Bun ($3.50), but I 'think' there is some eggplant lurking about. The innards are nice, but I think both of the buns have been in the steamer for awhile as the waiters bring these over to me in under a minute of me placing my order. The bottoms of the buns are little gluggy, but in this heat I can excuse a steamed bun with a gluggy bottom.
The BBQ Pork Char Sui Bun ($3.50) is my favourite of the two steamed buns. The BBQ Pork is sweet and sticky and the dough soft and pillow-like. The taste is slightly different from similar buns I've had a yum cha, more sweet and the meat is far less pink in colour.
And last, but not least, are the Traditional Peking Duck Pancakes ($12.00 for four pieces). I love love love Peking Duck Pancakes, so this plate was always going to be the winner for me. The pancakes are a bit more petite that I've had before, but the flavour is lovely. A sprig of garlic chive lifts the flavour of the pancake and cuts through the sweetness of the sauce. YUM!
Opera Kitchen is located on the Opera House's lower concourse, next to the Opera Bar.