Posted by: Anna | August 8, 2011

Best Eating Day Ever??

We started our morning early at the Sydney Fish Market. I have never been to a big famous fish market before, so I didn’t really know what to expect. After walking through a smelly, busy shipping area with crates of fish being loaded into various restaurant and supply trucks, we entered the hall of yummy, as I like to call it, or the public area (as people who are less excited about eating fish for breakfast might call it).

We all wandered happily, admiring displays of healthy, fresh whole fish, ready for some happy customer to pick and enjoy. In each shop, you can pick any fish, have it cooked by the kitchen however you like, and be enjoying your personally selected meal in minutes. The kitchens can also offer almost any other seafood preparation you might want, from lobster mornay to seafood fried rice.

Look at these gorgeous prawns!

We oohed and ahhed for several minutes, each shouting for someone to come and discover this fish, or the guy speed-shucking fresh Australian oysters, or the scallops with the roe attached (what is that, anyway?). After yelling and generally acting like excited children, we decided it was time to make a plan. We all agreed to order our food from one shop. Jack went with seafood fried rice. Tommy and I split two enormous logs of sashimi – that’s right, we just pointed to two hunks of sashimi fish, and the girl whipped out her sushi knife and asked us how thick we would like it sliced. She sliced it up for us and we ate the freshest sashimi of our lives – yum, and only $30.

Dad decided to go for one of the platters that allows you to sample several things – raw oysters, half a lobster, and some beautiful jumbo prawns. Mom opted for a live crab, cooked Singapore chili crab style. She pointed to her chosen one – a medium sized, wiggling beauty. The seafood counter delivered it to the kitchen, and a few minutes later, a giant plate of spicy, fresh, yummy Singapore crab waited to be devoured messily.

Smoked salmon, oysters, prawns....who doesn't want to eat that for breakfast?

To wash it all down, we opted for a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and plastic cups (20 cents each) from the wine shop in the hallway. It might have been 9 AM in Sydney, but it was 5 PM somewhere. A breakfast of champions. Who isn’t ready for a full day of sightseeing after sashimi, oysters, chili crab and wine for breakfast?

After hours of sightseeing and many buses and trains all over Sydney, we finally broke for lunch at a famous pie shop. Savory pies (filled with meat, rather like chicken pot pie, but with wide variety) are very popular in Australia. We each had a pie, sitting on a cushy bed of mashed potatoes and topped with a cloud of mashed minted green peas and a pool of brown gravy. The perfect homey lunch for a busy day.

For dinner, we had made reservations at a highly reviewed Japanese restaurant in Sydney called J-Ten. When we arrived, they placed us in a private room with sliding rice paper doors and a sunken table, giving the impression of a traditional Japanese table for sitting on the floor (without the inconvenience of actually doing so). Perusing the menu, I was excited to find a variety of modern interpretations of traditional Japanese staples. We decided to order a bunch of dishes to share, starting with a raw bonito fish topped with toasted garlic and a drizzle of sesame, sake and fresh herbs. It was a burst of fresh and piquant flavors with a melty texture.

Dinner continued on the same high note it had begun. We had scallops topped with miso served on lime slices. A bite of scallop hinted at the lime flavor, filled the mouth with umami from the miso, and the scallop purely melted away with perfect texture. Tommy and Dad pointed to the scallop as their favorite dish. We tried the sashimi platter – more amazing fresh fish, even better than the fresh sashimi from breakfast (I’ve never been able to write that sentence before!). We had a sous vide (70 degree) pork tenderloin dish topped with a poached egg and served in a light broth. The pork managed to have a tender, delicate texture which worked really well with the richness of the poached egg yolk and the light salty broth. I loved dinner, if you can’t tell. Every meal that day was a delicious experience, unique and unlike any other experience for me.



  1. Yeah to good eating!

  2. That just sounds fantastic! I am so glad your mom and dad and jack are there to enjoy it with you. Give Sally a big birthday hug for me and tell her that we miss them very much. I am thrilled that you all are having such a good time.
    Vicki and Terry

  3. Wow, you guys are making me so hungry!

  4. I’ll have what your dad is having, please!

  5. The fish market was my number one thing to do before we left Sydney and it is not to be missed. I wished we had gone our first day so we could have gone back every day. And the place where we had meat pies is called Harry’s On Wheels (although it is not on wheels) and it is famous in Sydney and right on the tram line. It has been there since the 40’s. I do love the meat pies. But most fabulous was the sushi place with Anna and Tommy doing most of the picking at our request. Unbelievable.

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