I managed to stretch my October eating out budget with the illusion of making the most out of Crave. I did have a pretty good excuse, though: it was Monday and I had no leftovers, so I had another Let’s Do Lunch, this time at Uccello.
I know I sound like a hypocrite every time I say I don’t like corporate or fancy venues and yet I keep going that kind of restaurants, but who can resist the prospect of buying a meal and a glass of wine at a hatted restaurant for less than its regular price? Uccello is located in level 4 of the Ivy, right next to the pool bar. It’s more smart-casual than elegant but still has a corporate vibe.
The Let’s Do Lunch menu had three options: a baby beetroot salad, a pasta and the lamb dish that is featured in the official program. I chose the lamb and asked the waitress for a salad suggestion to go with it. The complimentary bread arrived with a small plate of delicious mixed olives and cornichons marinated in chilli and garlic, which I devoured immediately as I was starting to feel like I needed to break the fast that started at 6 pm the day before.
Olives, cornichons, bread
Service at Uccello was spotless, but what impressed me the most was the speed at what my meal came from the kitchen. They must have guessed I was hungry :). The pan roasted rack of lamb, braised shoulder, spring vegetables, vin santo reduction was great, although only one of the ribs arrived medium-rare as requested (the other was medium). The piece of braised shoulder was tiny but bursting with flavour, and the vegetables (turnips, peas, broad beans, carrots) perfectly cooked. The sauce was delicious and worked well with the lamb, as did the not-too-acidic Brown Brothers shiraz.
Pan roasted rack of lamb, braised shoulder, spring vegetables, vin santo reduction ($38.00 with a glass of wine)
The side of broccolini, cherry tomatoes, chilli, garlic, parsley was excellent, too. The chilli added more depth than heat, and the salad felt light even when dressed with a lot of olive oil, Italian style.
Broccolini, cherry tomatoes, chilli, garlic, parsley ($13.00)
I was offered the dessert menu but once again gave it back before starting to salivate and stuck with a robust long black to finish my meal.
Ivy Level 4, 320 George Street
Sydney NSW 2000
(02) 9240 3000