We've been preaching about it a lot, but Kensington Street continues to up its game — even after the main part of the renovation was completed last year. Gone are the run-down facades; blitzed with a bitta glam and restored to their former glory, they're now home to some of the hottest new eateries in Sydney, including Jason Atherton's Kensington Street Social, Automata, Silvereye and The Old Clare. The latest, however, is Bar Chinois, an Asian-French fusion bar housed in an old terrace that's jumped right to the top of our 'places to try' list.
Chinois — which means Chinese in French — refers to the noir-esque Asian style adopted by Europeans in the 18th century. And while Chinese and French cuisine may seem like odd bedfellows, the folk at Bar Chinois have blended the best elements from both cultures: the bold flavours of Asian cuisine, cheese and a very French, very comprehensive drinks menu. Manning the kitchen is chef Nalinil Nonkham, who has created a mouth-watering menu with hero dishes like the sticky pork belly baguette and the croque monsieur with smoked ham, gruyere cheese, béchamel and cauliflower pickle. Also on the menu will be some salt cod croquettes with wasabi béarnaise, Tokyo crepes with enoki and shiitake mushroom, cream cheese and chive, and kimchi pomme frites topped with Gruyere cheese.
And because it's not a genuinely French experience unless you're little buzzed, you'll be able to wash it all down with a chic teapot cocktail (try the Coco Chanel, a blend of coconut tequila, passionfruit, lime, apple and lemon sorbet) or breakfast bubbly (that's just regular champagne at breakfast, FYI). So allons-y, amis affames — let's see what this newbie got.
Bar Chinois is located at 16 Kensington Street, Chippendale and is open noon till late Monday to Friday and 9am to 10pm on Sundays. For more info, visit their Facebook page.