Where to experience meals you can’t cook at home
Whether it’s the inclusion of an unpronounceable ingredient, the delicateness of the dish’s presentation or simply the fact that it left you wanting to lick the plate clean, some meals leave you wondering how in the world they were created. Well beyond the skillset of the average home cook, it’s a treat to enjoy a meal that you would/could never cook at home. And when that meal comes with a free bottle of wine as a Citi cardholder it leaves you questioning why you ever cook for yourself.
Sydney - Barzaari
Don’t let the rustic suburban setting fool you, the eastern mediterranean cuisine at barzaari is far from your average home-cooked meal. A contemporary take on traditional flavours, most of the dishes on the designed-to-be-shared menu are best left to the experts. In the kitchen, the team at Barzaari have both a wood-fired oven and charcoal barbeque at their disposal which adds a depth of flavour to everything from wood fired green beans - somehow incorporating sea spray - to the rump cap cooked over charcoal served with chermoula, hummus, onion and sumac. As a Citi cardholder, your free bottle of wine will give you ample time to sample and savour a mix of small plates and larger dishes. To walk away feeling like you’ve truly pushed your boundaries try the sour plum with fresh curd, salted cucumber, dill and borage, the gooralie pork neck served with loukaniko, smoked eggplant, olive, silverbeet, and a sand pit coffee to finish - a strong Middle Eastern coffee heated in a cezve over an impressively large pan of hot sand.
Melbourne – Kumo Izakaya
Given it takes years of training to become an Itamae or sushi chef, take the night off and enjoy the precision and art of Japanese cuisine. Equal parts bar and restaurant, a Japanese izakaya is a relaxed environment to enjoy a couple of drinks and pick away at smaller share plates - in a similar style to Spanish tapas. Let one of the in-house sake experts pick your first drop and then as a Citi cardholder a free bottle of clean crisp white will go well with any of the dishes you choose over the course of the night. Taking a unique approach to traditional izakaya fare, Kumo’s menu incorporates twists of South East Asian, Korean and Chinese street food. Start with the classics with a mixed sashimi platter then break from tradition with the spicy tuna tacos with caviar, samphire and cucumber, crunchy octopus bites, fried ramen gnocchi with crispy cheese and chives and a truly unique Japanese pasta with cod roe, a 67 degree onsen egg and black tobiko.
Perth – Bistro Guillaume
From the chic setting inspired by the neighbourhood bistros of Paris, to the rich and elegant flavours on the menu, Bistro Guillaume is quintessentially French - bar the beautiful poolside setting of course. Renowned for taking great enjoyment from food, the menu at Bistro Guillaume encourages you to do as the French do and indulge. From the moment you crack the free bottle of wine you receive as a Citi cardholder, no element of the three-course dining experience should be skipped. Remember, you won’t be able to make it later at home. Start with the twice baked cheese soufflé with Roquefort sauce or the chicken liver parfait with pear chutney, and for mains opt for the classically French confit duck leg with radicchio, brussel sprouts, orange, pomegranate and duck vinaigrette and throw a side of French fries in for good measure. When it comes to desserts, more is best. Share the profiteroles with vanilla bean ice cream and warm chocolate sauce and a perfectly sweet slice of lemon tart with crème fraiche.
Gold Coast – Kiyomi
Having earnt a chefs hat from the Good Food Guide two year’s running, Kiyomi is pushing the boundaries of traditional Japanese fare with great success. The picture of opulence, Kiyomi doesn’t shy away from all that is decadent. While you can expect to find beautifully fresh cuts of sashimi on the menu, Kiyomi is reinventing tradition pairing seared scampi with foie gras, apple and shiso leaf. Certainly unlikely that you’ll find this in your pantry at home, Kiyomi also has a devoted caviar section on its menu – the definition of decadence. An extensive menu that includes a 9+ cut of wagyu exclusive to the restaurant, Kiyomi is the type of restaurant where you let the chef take you on a journey. Present your Citi card to receive a free bottle of wine and then relinquish control for a night you couldn’t imagine recreating at home.
Keen to push your culinary boundaries further? Check out the hundreds of partner restaurants across the country where you’re entitled as a Citi cardholder to a free bottle of wine.