July 17, 2012

Eating Sydney I – Jonah’s, Whale Beach

By In Photographs, Reviews
If you are tempted by the seaview one of those villas or houses, scattered liberally along the coast will cost you upwards of a AU$1 million. Driving around and you will see many for sale; if you are not in the market for a little renovation and updating work and want to move straight in then your pocket is going to have to be deeper still.

This is the Whale Beach peninsula. Such properties with views of the open Pacific, as here, or the bay on the other side with views to die for. Jonah’s is just a short drive up the coast from Sydney proper but to arrive in style why not jump in a seaplane – the 20 minute flight from Rose Bay to Palm Beach gives you a “majestic view of Sydney Harbour and Northern Beaches before landing on Pittwater” where Jonah’s will be waiting at the jetty for the short trip up to the hotel and restaurant*. If you don’t mind the occasional soap star acting out the latest crises for Home and Away this could be the ideal location for a weekend retreat or retirement property. But if you are ‘just visiting’ then admiring the view from Jonaha’s – the sun terrace has the most stunning vista – could be more your thing.

Considering the location and the wealthy surrounds a stay (they have a few rooms in addition to the bar and restaurant) is not going to be cheap; but here you certainly get what you pay for.
In my case it was drinks and lunch, paid for by those charming people behind Naked Wines Australia.

One of the few times I suffered from food-envy. Now my Berkshire Pork Belly ‘Bangalow’ was perfect in every way; nicely cooked, deliciously complemented by the ‘ragout of pig’s trotter, leeks and blood pudding’ and complimented gorgeously by the Roaring Meg Pinot Noir 2010 from Central Otago, New Zealand but Matt’s dish of Angus Beef Tenderloin with wagyu beef cheeks looked and smelt totally divine! And matching it with a heftier wine (St. Hallett Blackwell Shiraz 2009) certainly induced a little envy.

Luckily we did do a little sample exchange…

Shouldn’t neglect the starters either. While I don’t ‘do’ oysters the scallops with little blobs of cauliflower and almond puree and lemon sabayon were damn near perfect. Add a glass of the Stonier Reserve Chardonnay 2009 or the heavenly and complex Greywacke Wild Ferment Sauvignon 2010 and this is a taste sensation of the highest order! He says, about to be overcome with emotion…

For a wine lover the wine list is a marvel – one of the best European listings in the country apparently. It perhaps shouldn’t be surprising that Australia is almost totally focused on its own wines; bottles such as a Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon, totally not unusual in the UK, need a special ‘hand-sell’ according to the enthusiastic Sommelier, as would, I imagine, the extensive German Riesling listings.

Jonah’s is the luxury end of the spectrum. For the special winter lunch, the incomparable view and the joy of trying Australian wine matched with some superlative foods, an absolute joy. So once again – thank you Naked Wines!

* I should perhaps mention that Naked Wines Australia didn’t pack us off in a seaplane. We arrived in a hire van…

Jonahs Whale Beach

69 Bynya Road, Whale Beach, Sydney, Australia 2108

 

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