There are some friends whom you are more likely to dine with at ‘special’ places. By special I don’t necessarily mean fancy or expensive, but rather places that do certain things particularly well or who source particular ingredients which you know only some friends of yours will appreciate. There is nothing worse than excitedly taking friends to a place you deem ‘special’ only to have them be all blasé about it. Luckily, between Monsieur Poisson and myself, we have many friends who appreciate the finer details of food. Two of these friends are Weirdo and Ms Sourdough whom we decided to have brunch with at Danks Street Depot to celebrate their newly married status after having returned from holidaying overseas.
Ms Sourdough has heard me rave about Danks Street Depot previously but unfortunately has had limited opportunity to dine out in Sydney due to having been based in Canberra for work for the past few years. So now begins not only a new phase of life together with Weirdo, but hopefully some newfound food adventures in Sydney as well!
We are lucky to score a table in the corner of an otherwise packed out café not long after some people leave. Ms Sourdough and Monsieur Poisson both decide to have the ‘Poached eggs with bacon hash, herbed tomato and sourdough toast’. The eggs are nice and soft but the bacon hash is pleasantly not quite what we expect. Instead of the commonly seen grated potato ‘pancake’, this is a fry-up of chunky potato and big cubes of bacon – very hearty indeed.
Weirdo gives in to our slight persuasion (read: pressure) to order the ‘Pepperonata with eggs and lamb merguez sausages’. There’s just something so attractive about a one-pot dish involving sauce with eggs cracked in at the end. The sausages are spicy and firm but not too ‘lamby’, to borrow Weirdo’s words.
I’m not feeling terribly hungry which is most unusual so I order a serve of ‘Garlic bread with nut brown butter and fresh parsley’ for the table to share as well as the ‘Saucisson sec with cornichons’. The garlic bread is from Brasserie Bread and is studded with whole cloves of roasted garlic which are sweet, mellow and earthy. Combined with the nutty butter and deep green parsley, this is heaven on a plate and – I would like to theorise – a perfect cure for a hangover.
The ‘Saucisson sec with cornichons’ is like part of what makes up a Ploughman’s lunch but done French-style. I have a long standing love affair with cured meats and this salami-style sausage with its visible globs of fat and whole black peppercorns does not disappoint. Cornichons, in my book, apart from being rather cute to look at also provide a much needed tartness to cut through the fattiness and strong flavours of most cured meats.
We enjoy some further conversation following our food but, despite us all claiming that we’re full, decide to drive up to Bourke Street Bakery for a bit of a look-see…
2 Danks St (cnr Young St), Waterloo NSW
Tel: (02) 9698 2201
Opening Hours: Mon-Wed 7:30am-4pm