Now that my friends Ana and Rale are parents, their birthdays are no longer celebrated in Newtown with dinner and drinks (emphasis in the drinks). Now they prefer to be closer to home (up North), and I like it because it takes me out of my comfort zone. This year Ana’s first of multiple celebrations was a girls night out at Hornsby RSL’s Level One Lounge.
As an RSL newbie I wasn’t sure what to expect with regard to food quality. The popular choice of the night was the platter with 3 small meals to share plus grilled flatbread for $20 (member price). Gluten-free options were clearly indicated in the menu. I asked if the bread could be substituted for something else but it couldn’t. I ordered my plate with sautéed chorizo with capsicum, olive and rosemary, garlic and chilli mushrooms, and lemon calamari with garlic aioli. I figured the portions would be small (hence the bread to fill you up) so I ordered some mixed marinated olives as well. I was wrong! The servings were very generous and I struggled to almost finish all the food. I offered the bread to the other girls but they couldn’t even finish theirs. Everything was tasty, with the calamari being my favourite bit since it’s hard to find tender, crunchy, gluten-free calamari.
Sautéed chorizo with capsicum, olive and rosemary, garlic and chilli mushrooms, lemon pepper calamari with garlic aioli ($20)
Mixed marinated olives ($4.50)
Other sharing dishes ordered that night included harissa prawns, slow cooked pork in Chinese 5 spice, and slow roasted pork ribs in chipotle BBQ sauce. Everything looked fantastic and all servings were huge.
Lemon pepper calamari with garlic aioli, slow cooked pork in Chinese 5 spice, harissa prawns ($20)
Sautéed chorizo with capsicum, olive and rosemary, lemon pepper calamari with garlic aioli, slow cooked pork in Chinese 5 spice ($20)
The only person who didn’t order a share platter had a flatbread pizza with marinated chicken, spinach, mushroom, semi-dried tomatoes and Camembert.
Marinated chicken, spinach, mushroom, semi-dried tomatoes and Camembert flatbread pizza ($17.50)
Level One Lounge
4 High Street
Hornsby NSW 2077
(02) 9477 7777