Dave Whitting has some serious chops. His resume includes the relaunch of the acclaimed Subiaco Hotel restaurant and overseeing the opening and kitchen at Bistro Guillaume, both in Perth. Before that he was second in charge at Guillaume at Bennelong. Now he’s returned to Sydney to head the Langham Hotel’s Bistro Remy.
Whitting will tell you it’s a casual neighbourhood restaurant. “A bistro-style environment where locals come and dine a number of times a week. Not an expensive restaurant.” That’s not really the whole picture, though. First, it’s in a Miller’s Point four-and-a-half-star hotel, so it’s certainly more lush and fancy than the average neighbourhood haunt. Second, Whitting’s food is definitely fine dining.
Take the smoked salmon. The menu describes it simply as “house-smoked salmon, dill crème, fennel and lemon”. It is a luscious piece of cured and cold-smoked salmon from the south of New Zealand with powdered leek ash; crème fresh whipped with dill and fennel pollen; lemon curd; and a side of seaweed-dusted brioche croutons. Then there’s a squid-ink-brushed kingfish with pea foam, pea mouse, mussels and caviar. And a dish of Melanda pork belly with caramel apple sauce, potato crème and pork skin that’s cooked separately for maximum crunch.
For dessert Whitting has introduced an incredibly finessed roasted quince, blue cheese and wine-reduction marshmallow-pavlova-like creation that gets denser the further you dig into the centre. “I've done a bit of pastry in my time. I did all the croissants and pastries at the Intercontinental. Since then I've certainly read a lot and worked for many great chefs in Sweden and the US,” he says.
Cocktails from Emanuele Casati share a lot of the kitchen’s ingredients and are each designed around a particular story. The most memorable is the Five to Seven with cognac, sweet vermouth, Gran Classico, blackberry liqueur and a honey water Casati infuses with truffle, absinthe and lemon zest. The story that inspired it is the time between work and the family dinner. “I've tried to represent the drink that is going to give you energy to go to your mistress before you come back to your family,” says Casati.
89–113 Kent Street, Sydney
(02) 9256 2222
Mon to Fri 6.30am–10.30am, 12pm–3pm, 5.30pm–10.30pm
Sat 6.30am–11am, 5.30pm–10.30pm