In 2019, a kitchen fire forced popular Surry Hills diner Nomad to depart its Foster Street space. Since then it’s endured a temporary venue change (due to the fire and associated insurance issues) and the coronavirus lockdown. But in November 2020, Nomad finally returned home.
To anyone who frequented Nomad pre-fire, the space will feel familiar. The light-wood furniture and pared-back decor remains, with the addition of banquette seating in hunter-green leather. The woodfired oven, charcoal grill and kitchen counter are also there – but now they’re twice the size. The 30-seat counter is the best spot in the house to witness chef Jacqui Challinor’s return to charcoal.
The menu has been totally reimagined, although some favourites remain (longtime fans will be pleased to hear that the raw hiramasa kingfish and the truffle-honey-pecorino zucchini flowers aren't going anywhere)
Over the fire, Challinor is doing a Murray cod with artichokes, anchovy and za’atar; a six-week dry-aged rib eye; smoked zucchini with feta; and wood-roasted eggplant. For dessert, there’s an olive-oil ice-cream sandwich with sesame, pistachio and honeycomb. There’s also a deli and an extensive house-cured charcuterie selection, including smoked ocean trout basturma and date-glazed Wagyu tongue.