Safe and warm inside Icebergs

idrb14-14-400-400-80 - Lunchmag

Jonathan Porter

Yup … today is a good day for lunch. Sitting inside one of the most famous spots in Sydney, the winter surf is eight foot and pumping, gnarly … bitchin’ even.

It’s a Saturday and no one is here for business. All are here to enjoy the day and the food. A scant few perhaps are here just to be seen; some of these people are what passes for famous Down Under and of course are studiously ignored by all the cognoscenti.

Down to business:  a dozen south coast Sydney rock oysters each accompanied by a bottle of Veuve Clicquot NV. I notice the champagne is going down a little too easy so I order a Menabrea to slow down the champagne intake.

The oysters are morsels of the cleanest waters on this blue rock we call home. Salty fresh and lovely. We both order another dozen each.

There is so much great seafood on the menu (like wild hand dived Hervey Bay scallops on the half shell with green chilli dressing) that it seems a shame to get a steak. That’s what we’ve done however, swearing to return soon for the scallops. I like the thought of someone sneaking up on my food and putting it into a bag hundreds of feet under water.

The steak is a quarter kilo of ox fillet, 150 day grain fed angus beef.

It’s served with what looks like the femur of a brontosaurus, but is in fact bone marrow roasted with garlic, lemon, mint and butter.

The whole thing is cross cut to enable me to get at the marrow, which I spread on the steak.

The wine is Rockford Basket Press, a serious shiraz to go with the ox fillet, which is crisp on the outside with the fat caramelised just right but bloody in the middle.

About a dozen water borne gladiators take on nature’s fury just a scant 100m from the window where we sit safe and warm eating some of the best food a blessed city and nation can offer.

The wind is from the west, off the desert. Bondi Bay faces south east, so the waves are sitting well in order to smite the building and each crest throws up an iridescent rainbow of salted mist to the setting sun.

As we enjoy this amazing meal some of the waves strike with a force sufficient to put gentle ripples in our glasses of the hand picked Basket Press.

We are offered dessert but opt for more Menabreas to go with our Delord Bas Armagnac – laid down a goodly number of years before I was born.

The talk meanders around the gentlemen of the trade we have both known, so much nicer than the seething vipers and viperesses they’re letting into newsroooms nowadays. Reporters with a couple of combat tours under their belts who used their own shoe leather to break yarns, who drank with their sources and shared their slumgullion.

Soon we are both roaring with laughter, (it may have been the armagnac). They say reminiscing is a bad idea, but I maintain that’s true only if you’re looking back more than you’re looking forward – and besides, it’s fun to do once in a while.

As the sun goes down we repair to the bar. Some more wave watching is clearly in order.

Icebergs Dining Room and Bar

1 Notts Avenue Bondi Beach
NSW 2026 Australia

PHONE  + 61 2 9365 9000
FAX +61 2 9365 9099
EMAIL [email protected]


Tues to Sat : 12 Noon – 12 Midnight
Sunday : 12 Noon – 10pm


Tues to Sat : Lunch 12 – 3pm, Dinner 6.30 – 10.30pm
Sunday : Lunch 12 – 3pm, Dinner 6.30 – 9pm


Tus to Sat : 12Noon – 12 Midnight
Sunday : 12 Noon – 10pm

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