Harbour Bar and Kitchen | First Post of 2017

Transitions. Changes. A journey.

These are just some of the many things that can aptly describe the last year and a half. I have been absent for quite some time, posting one or two things here and there, but absent nonetheless. I needed time to figure out a lot of things, mostly on my own, mostly with people surrounding me. I’ll spare you the details dear readers, but suffice it to say that there were good times and bad, but in the end it’s how you handle them and what you make of yourself (all against adversary). Also, adulting is bloody hard! But we got there in the end with rainbows and flying unicorns and sprinkles and flowers 🙂

So for my comeback post, my first one for 2017, I am hoping that the happiness of our first meal in 2017 (waaaay back in January) with my parents and siblings, will be the light that will rekindle the fire inside me. To capture moments. Take photos. To write. Share.

We decided to enjoy the beautiful summer that we’re having in Sydney by taking the parents to Darling Harbour, which is quite close to our apartment. It was January, the sun just setting behind us, the harbour buzzing with summer activities and eager tourists, and us? Craving for some cerveza (Mr J), cocktail (me!), and good old fashioned ribs. Harbour Bar and Kitchen recently opened and offered the perfect vantage point for this one beautiful summer afternoon. The beer was cold, the lychee cocktails were exciting, the cheese platter was humongous, the ribs were smokey perfection, and the fish was amazing. It was definitely a great start to a promising year ahead.

Beer and Lychee Flyover (Soho lychee and chambord with pineapple juice and strawberry purée)
Cured meat platter (for two)
Full rack beef ribs and woodfired chargrilled barramundi with saffron rice

Harbour Bar and Kitchen
Shop 437& 447, Level 2,Harbourside Shopping Centre 2-10 Darling Drive, Darling Harbour
9280 2029
Open Monday to Sunday 9am til late

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New Cocktail Menu & a Lunch Date at Helm Bar, Sydney

Weather in Sydney has been quite confusing lately. Out of 1 day of sunshine, we probably get 10 days of rain. So when we were suddenly blessed with a fabulous Saturday last week, Mr J and I thanked our lucky stars for choosing this day to book a lunch date at Helm Bar thanks to George from Wasamedia. Why? It’s in Darling Harbour. It’s (almost) outdoors. It’s near the water. We, Sydneysiders, are water babies and will get every chance we can to go near the water, in the water, next to water.

Sydney was sparklingly gorgeous this Saturday afternoon. We’ve just done an invigorating run around the park, waking up those winter muscles from their cold slumber. The idea of a good pub lunch, some cocktails and cold beer was too enticing, and Helm Bar did not disappoint. Helm isn’t just a place for drinks with your girlfriends on a Saturday night, I basically found out that it’s also a place for steak and mussels for Mr J and I!

Plenty of sports TV for the boys
Meanwhile… my drink was being made
One for you, two for me

We started off with some drinks while waiting for our meals to arrive. Mr J is a typical beer drinking bloke, so he ordered his usual Corona Extra. As for me, I wanted something different from the new cocktail menu so I opted for the Thai Berry cocktail.

Mr J was delighted to find out the Corona Extra was the imported, original kind from Mexico, which apparently is a good thing. He was a happy kid.

Fresh from our recent Southeast Asian trip, I was still stuck in our beach-laden holiday (and frankly was quite happy to stay there) and so the prospect of drinking an Asian-inspired drink excited me.

Thai Berry: muddled strawberries, clap of Thai basil, long pour vodka, served short

Our mains soon arrived, and Mr J had the black angus sirloin steak with hand cut chips and fresh salad. The medium rare steak was cooked perfectly, the salad was fresh and crisp and the peppercorn sauce gave the dish a good kick.

I’m a fan of mussels and

250g Black Angus sirloin steak with hand cut chips, salad and peppercorn sauce

again, having just been back from devouring plates and plates of seafood whilst in Bali, I was still craving for more seafood. Mussels? Check. Thai? Check (again, I’m still in lala-Asia…). Ginger, chili, coriander, lemongrass and coconut milk soup? Check. The Australian mussels were so succulent and the sweet, salty, spicy soup was just so right. A side of chips pretty much made the trip to the gym earlier that morning worth it.

Thai style Australian black mussels with ginger, chili, coriander, lemongrass and coconut milk and fries
Succulent Australian black mussels!

And yes, the mussels come in their traditional Belgian mussel pots. Best thing about this is the convenience of putting the empty mussel shells on the lid.

I still had room for one more cocktail, so I ordered the Ginny Hendricks because I wanted to be girly and drink from a martini glass, and also for its incredily catchy name. Yes, I am not hard to please. The drink was refreshing thanks to the muddled cucumber and you get that instant warm hit of Hendricks gin. Mmmmm…

Ginny Hendricks: Hendricks gin and Aperol, muddled with cucumber, lime juice, sugar syrup, topped with ruby red grapefruit juice in a martini glass. Staff pick!

When it’s a proper time for a lady to drink (ie sunset and I’m in my party/drinking mood), I’d like to have more of these cocktails please (no, I do not have a drinking problem… swear!). As I said, I’m not a hard girl to please… just give me a bowl of mussels beforehand and a glass or two of something sweet and with alcohol and I’m all set. Thanks Helm Bar for pleasing this girl right here.

View from our table

There was also the Jazz Festival on that weekend so off Mr J and I went, tripping and frolicking around in our alcohol and food-induced state, just happy to be under the warmth of the sun and with full tummies.

Jazz and Blues Festival, Darling Harbour

Oh, did I mention this was our first lunch date back in Sydney as husband and wife too?


Trish & Mr J dined as guests of Helm Bar. Thanks to George of Wasamedia and Helm Bar for the kind hospitality.

Helm Bar

Wheat Road  Sydney NSW 2000

9290 1571

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