Bianca: We were lucky this past March/April to have three French relatives visit, having family all around the world; we are blessed to have these usually short but sweet visits. Between all the family members we did the usual Sydney touristy things. Blue Mountains, Hunter Valley, the city, Harbour boat tours, walks around Manly and Bondi. As well as some really special experiences – Madama Butterfly on the harbour (in the rain), yum cha (not a regular undertaking for our French cousins) and a fabulous dinner at Via Napoli. All made special by the family attending.
Madre, Vanessa and I were set to take our cousins to the Fish Markets, an icon in the Sydney Fish Mongering industry. They had not experienced anything quite like it, France obviously, is home to delicious artisan cheeses/ breads/ charcuteries/ sweets…the list goes on really. Mum and I were told by our cousin Christine, that the seafood was exceptionally cheaper than in France. Walking through the bustling markets at lunchtime on a Friday, you get swept up in the ‘Joie de vivre’. A complete coincidence we walked straight to the deli to admire the cheeses on display. We didn’t indulge today as we had a little date with an ice cream post lunch, sensibly called ‘Number two’ from Gelato Messina. Fighting the crowds we had a little wander around to scope the arena.
Getting swept up in the momentum we were herded into ‘Nicholas seafood’s’ where our French cousins enjoyed some Grilled Swordfish skewers, Mornay and Kilpatrick Oysters, Deep-fried Calamari and BBQ Prawns.
Not much of a ‘fruits of the sea’ fan myself, I searched out some less adventurous fish, I found myself at ‘Peters Fish Market’.
To share with Madre, we had grilled swordfish with Greek salad and chips. The swordfish was perfectly cooked, moist and perhaps, offending a few people, delicious when slathered with copious amounts of tartar sauce. The pale undercooked chips, however, a very sad sight for sore eyes. Vanessa enjoyed some salmon sashimi and a small tasting platter of king prawns and oysters. Outdoor tables do tend to turn over very quickly but it’s a case of hovering and giving the stink-eye, then outside, you have to compete with the kamikaze seagulls.
Making the move from the Fish markets, our plan was to make a beeline for Gelato Messina on Crown Street but a slight patter that then turned torrential and with the prospect of a drenching due to a lack of seating. We made the decision to head to Gelato Messina at The Star in Pyrmont. Wanting to give them a quick brief tour we made a beeline for Adriano Zumbo, just to have a sticky beak, Christine was blown away by the prices of the macaroons (expensive!!).
When it comes to Gelato Messina, mum and I don’t mess around. We follow those guys like nobody’s business. The main conversation between us that day was “Number Two” or “Black Forest”? We have our priorities in life! We were all excited to introduce our French family to our favourite Gelato shop in Sydney. I had the ‘Number Two’, Mum had the ‘Black Forest’, Vanessa the ‘Salted Caramel’ (For any personal trainers reading, that would be a glass of water) and the cousins enjoyed – Salted Caramel, Coffee, Chocolate and a Lemon Sorbet.
We then proceeded – in a slow waddle back to the car, not before taking a walk along the gaming floor in ‘The Star’ casino. As well as being carded…it was a fabulous day.