Sugar Hit 2011: Sydney Harbour Marriott & InterContinental

October has come around once again and, apart from Christmas paraphernalia popping up in department stores (some since early September!), it also means the Crave Sydney International Food Festival is upon us. For Monsieur Poisson and I it means another year of Sugar Hit desserts, but we have both promised ourselves to take things a little easier than last year where we racked up a mammoth ten Sugar Hits – our most ever!

Sugar Hit desserts are offered at participating venues throughout October with a glass of Brown Brothers dessert wine for $20 from 9-11pm – some only on certain nights of the week so make sure you check before rocking up.

Sydney Harbour Marriott
Although we don’t spot anyone having the Sugar Hit when we arrive at 9pm, we were told when making our reservation that it would be a full house that night. The thing to take note of is that places often have a limited number of desserts prepared for each night and that once they’re sold out then that’s it.

The Sugar Hit here is billed as ‘A chocolate tasting including milk chocolate and hazelnut tower, white chocolate mousse and rich mud cake’. The ‘tower’ appears not so much as a tower as a slice of gelatine-set mousse on a chocolate brownie base and adorned with a puffed rice crunch. The white chocolate mousse is smooth and not overly rich nor creamy. Supported by a thin disc of sponge underneath, it is bound by a dark chocolate woven “basket” which has echoes of last year’s Shangri-La Sugar Hit. The mud cake is rich and dense but the least sugary of the three components, and rounds off the chocolate theme nicely. Served with a glass of Brown Brothers Moscato, the overall presentation of this Sugar Hit has me thinking of portions of desserts from a hotel buffet assembled together on a plate. The swirls decorating the plate are a plus point however, being raspberry coulis rather than a flavoured gel.

I’ve ordered a pot of Earl Grey on the side which, at only $5.50, is the popular hotel choice of Ronnefeldt and is elaborately presented on a silver tray with milk, honey, rock sugar and two bite-sized coconut cookies!

Sugar Hits at the InterContinental have consistently impressed both Monsieur Poisson and myself so we keep coming back year after year. It’s a popular choice as we spot two medium-sized groups of Sugar Hit goers as we are taken to our seats. When the dessert is placed down in front of us, we notice it is very similar in composition and presentation to last year’s.

The description of ‘Home-made pistachio and bitter chocolate vacherin with blood orange custard’ doesn’t actually prepare me for the elaborate layered chocolate slice with which we’re presented. Interspersed with windows of blood orange jelly and custard, the chocolate slice is flanked by a blood orange, chocolate ganache macaron perched on a strip of fruit jelly. I don’t detect any discernible pistachio, meringue, nor bitterness about the chocolate, however the whole dessert comes together well as a subtle and balanced interpretation of the classic jaffa flavour combination. No in-your-face orange here.

As for taking it easier this year, Monsieur Poisson and I have decided to share a Sugar Hit at each place we visit rather than consuming one each. This doesn’t stop him from ordering an affogato though!

30 Pitt St, Sydney NSW
Tel: (02) 9259 7279

117 Macquarie St (entrance cnr of Bridge St & Phillip St), Sydney NSW
Tel: (02) 9240 1396

happy eating!


  1. As a Sugar Hit veteran (I say that in the nicest possible way), you don't seem too wowed by this years offerings so far. Do you think they need to put a bit more effort in?

  2. Here we go again! I didnt get around to doing any sugr hits last year..not one, but i'm using you as my inspiration and will try to change that this time around. I love following your sugar hit adventures!

  3. Yay sugar hit time, I loving living it through you :)

  4. whoa i need to do the sugar hit when i'm back in sydney! seems to be so much fun!

  5. Haha, I think I will be Sugar Hit-ting vicariously from you!

  6. only 4 days into SIFF and you've already gone to two sugar hits =D

    Last time Sir D and I wanted to share a sugar hit at Azuma Patisserie they enforced a minimum charge of $20pp... so we had to order extra stuff to make up the bill :(

  7. the intercon one does look very similar to last year's. good to hear you guys are sharing sugar hits!!

  8. I can't believe it's that time of year again, time sure goes quick. I love Ronnefeldt tea and the coconut cookies are a lovely touch, and I guess a bit more sugar for you :)

  9. Very nice, though at $20 they are really pushing it in terms of value! $15 was the sweet spot, but I guess you do get a glass of wine.

  10. Hey vintagemacaroon, the Marriott Sugar Hit I feel needs a bit more "effort" - the flavours are all there but I always hope for something special that wows me with Sugar Hits. The Intercon has hit the presentation nail on the head with its only downfall being rather similar to last year's offering.

    Hey Gianna, I am seriously earning myself a reputation here... =p

    Hey Sara, for the month of October I really should dedicate this blog to something to do with desserts!

    Hey Irene, a friend of mine moved to England years ago and seriously misses Sugar Hits come every October!

    Hey Tina, no Sugar Hits for you?! But they come with a glass of wine, you know...

    Hey Jacq, some places do have a minimum spend unfortunately, and I have come across it in years past.

    Hey sugarpuffi, no so much looking after the figure as for sheer stomach space practicality reasons for sharing!

    Hey Dumpling Girl, I know, like I needed more sugar! The cookies did go well with the tea though =D

    Hey Howard, I definitely miss the days of $15 Sugar Hits - desserts, usually in hotels, and a glass of sweet stuff. Such value!

  11. yeah you're right, it really is reminiscent of last year's cocktail basket! usually the boy and i share a sugar hit regardless ^^"

  12. Go go Rita! I want you to break the record this year ya hear? :)

  13. Hey Vivian, the husband and I try to share the Sugar Hits now - we used to always have one each! - but some places do have an enforced minimum spend.

    Hey Ms Candy, I'm definitely not aiming to push for a record-breaking year, haha! =p


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