Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Misschu @ Opera Kitchen, Circular Quay

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!

Miss Chu @ Opera Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Opera Kitchen is located on the Opera House's lower concourse, next to the Opera Bar.


  1. I LOVE Misschu. I live quite close to the Darlo "cafe", so I try and stop by for duck-pancake snack-age as often as I can. I really should try something else there for a change, but those pancakes are too tasty...


  2. What a great way to avoid cooking at home in this oppressive weather! The duck pancakes look good!

  3. I suppose the fancy location and higher prices take Miss Chu's mystique away, no? Well, the important thing is that you got to sample some of their goodies.

  4. Thanks Mel, you've given me inspiration!! I must visit there - glad you added the link to the menu!!

    Try not to swelter tonight! Me, I can barely must the enthusiasm to cook!!!

    Don't melt!!!

  5. I love the photos. Such a pity it wasn't cooler in the city. The opera kitchen sounds interesting. I must keep it in mind for one of my few trips to the city - would it be child/stroller friendly?

  6. Hi R - can you believe I also used to live near the Darlo Cafe and had no idea it was there - I'm such a dag! I heard they may close soon as Miss Chu is annoyed with the council. I hope not as it looks so unique.

    Hi Joey - I'll do anything not to have to cook in this weather. Pancakes were lovely...should've got a second lot.

    Hi Gaby - I think Misschu's at the Opera Kitchen would be a total different of kettle of fish from the Darlo tuckshop - more trendy and fancy. I'm yet to try the Darlo joint, but am really excited about going there asap.

    Hi Cate - we're getting take away chook way am I cooking in this heat. Make sure you stay cool!

    Hi Muppy - it's a lovely spot and worth a visit even if it's a bit pricey. There's an escalator down to the concourse and it would be nice for kids during the day - lot's of seats at concourse level and up on top which would be nice in cooler weather (key an eye on the kids though as the water is right...there)! At night it would be very crowded with people drinking at the bar...not nice for kids at night.

  7. I love the Opera Kitchen. I walked past Misschu thinking the prices were a bit steep but I'm still getting used to Aussie pricing. I'd definitely go back, the view is unbeatable.

  8. oh wow - this place looks fantastic! and the bbq pork bun - craving for one now.

  9. The peking duck pancakes look awesome! Have you tried the version with plum sauce? It kicks the hoisin sauce's butt everytime!!


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