Its 10°C and raining in Sydney on Tuesday night. However, it’s the sixth Jacksons/Williams dinner club, so it’s worth rugging up under a brollie, braving the elements and heading down the road to Janine’s restaurant pick;
Na Zdrowie, a Polish paradise in the heart of Glebe.
The restaurant is cosy with a decor of warm earthy colours, rustic heavy furniture and a tummy-rumbling scent of comfort food wafting from the kitchen.
This is my first foray into Polish food and I’m positive it’s the love child of Russia and Germany. It could be my new favourite, but I’m getting ahead of myself….
After reading the poetic ramblings of Polish platitudes on the front of the menu, we dive straight into gastronomic glory…Entrees are Widliny $14.90 for Jay; a platter of Polish smoked meats and sausage served with rye bread and condiments. Smalec $7.50 for Ian; which turns my stomach even before it comes out…its seasoned pork lard with chunks of apples & onion and served with pickles and rye bread. I have a taste, and it reminds me of the yucky run-off at the bottom of a cold pan of roast chicken. Ick! But Ian liked it very much, which is all that counts 🙂 Janine & I both have Peirogi $15.90 which are delicious little dumplings, fat with filling such as mushroom & sauerkraut, white cheese & potato, and meat with onion & bacon. It comes served on a char-grilled tomatoey sauce.
It’s the Kielbasa $18.90; smoked Polish sausage char-grilled and served with pickles, potatoes and mustard.
A sure sign that Jay is content with his food is either he’s really quiet or he has a slight gleam across his forehead; on this night it’s too cold for the gleam, but he’s quietly sitting next to me munching away; even Ian finds it hard to coax a word from him as he works his way through the Szaszlyk $21.90 which is a fat skewer of char-grilled beef, pork loin, chicken breast and veggies served with kopytka (sauce), dumplings & salad.
Ian’s last minute bait & switch was the Bigos $19.60 a Polish stew of smoked meat and sauerkraut served with the beloved potato.
Janine’s main was traditional Polzki home cooking at it’s best….Golabki $20.90 which consisted of meat and rice wrapped in cabbage leaves and baked, served with potatoes in a tomatoey sauce.
We seriously shouldn’t have had dessert – none of us could really fit it in, but it’s like an unwritten rule that when we have our monthly dinner club, we go the whole hog and eat dessert too.
Janine orders the Polish Cake of the Day $9.50 which is Poppyseed. She is really too full to proclaim loudly, and anyways, I am in heaven, oblivious to my friends, with homestyle apple pancakes and icecream Placuszki Nalesnikowe $12.50. Jay and Ian both have the Kosciuszko’s Icecream $9.50 which is pretty impressive as it arrives, sugar cubes on fire! It’s vanilla ice cream served with Polish savories and topped with the sugar cubes soaked in alcohol and set a flame.