Pony Dining and Guylian Cafe

9 November 2008 at 7:31 am Leave a comment

So I felt bad that the boyfriend and I haven’t gone out for an “intimate” dinner in a long time. The reason? I’ve been on a tight budget for the past year because of my mortgage, and obviously he starts feeling bad when the price tags of everything – clothes, food, activities – start going higher than my budget.

But I just recently acquired a significant wad of cash from my tax return, and to treat myself and the boy, I planned a nice, intimate dinner out in a fancy restaurant in the city. I wanted somewhere in OPT or Circular Quay, but one look at the prices and I retreated back. Don’t get me wrong… I’m sure those restaurants have absolutely fabulous menus, but I just couldn’t justify spending THAT MUCH without any occasion to celebrate (eg birthdays, V day, anniversary, etc).

So my friend suggested Pony in The Rocks. One quick Google of the place, one booking email, and we were set! I didn’t tell the boy where we were going at first.. only to wear something nice. I even volunteered to drive to the city, because oftentimes he is the designated driver.

Silly me forgot to bring my camera because a.) I was so excited to finally go to a nice restaurant and not just the local Mr Thanh’s Restaurant (although Mr Thanh’s beef pho is still the best in the area!), and b.) I was running late that night before the boy picked me up, and I was just running around trying to get ready, put on my dress, make up, shoes, and bag!

So we were first offered complimentary olives and grilled bread with eggplant dip for starters, and they were just fabulous! I never, ever liked olives before, but the ones in Pony were goodness gracious fabulous! And the smoky grilled bread with the spicy, almost-Moroccan eggplant dip were so tasty I could’ve eaten it all by myself!

Anyway, the service was excellent, although the wait staff did messed up our orders a bit. The boy ordered 2 of each of the oysters (can’t remember the type… oh I’m really getting old!), whilst I ordered the wood fired pork. Instead, he only got 2 oysters, and I got crispy skin prawns. Never mind that… I hate taking food back unless it’s raw. So I happily accepted the prawns, took one bite, and died and went to heaven. The prawns were the tastiest, most succulent, freshest prawns I’ve ever had! And I have to thank the honest mistake of the waitstaff. Woohoo!

Our main meals came soon after, and my medium sirloin with red wine sauce, wilted spinach, and potato cakes were just what I wanted, whilst the boy’s veal with zucchini fritatas, baby carrots, and jus was well received as well. I guess my one and only criticism was the potato cakes – they had this certain, indistinctive after taste that I did not enjoy at all. I would normally finish my whole plate clean, but this time I really couldn’t.

By this time we were both so full that we had to give dessert a miss. So we asked for the bill, and before I even took my arm out to take it, the boy quickly grabbed it and paid the dinner. I wanted to pay for it because it was my treat, but he said that he really wanted to pay for the whole thing because he wanted to surprise me. What a sweet boy! All these months of scrimping money has paid off! Yay!

So to reward the boy, I proposed a long walk around the harbour, and see if there’s still space in our tummies for dessert.

An hour of walking around the beautiful Harbour City of Sydney, past the Overseas Passenger Terminal, under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and back to The Rocks later, we found ourselves (and our feet!) subconsciously heading towards the Guylian Cafe in East Circular Quay.

By this time, dinner was digested, and we were hungry for more degustation, budget style!

I ordered the baked chocolate cake with signature Guylian chocolate ganache, whilst the boy had the ice cream palate and a chocolate brownie on the side, plus 2 English breakfast teas to wash all the sweetness down. Although the price tag was abit more than Lindt and Max Brenner, the chocolate was indeed fabulous, the service incredible, and the whole experience unforgettable! Oh and this time, I insisted on picking up the bill!

All in all, the night was just as intimate as I wanted; the food as delicious as the menu, the wait staff, and the websites promised; and the night as great as I had planned!

Pony Lounge and Dining
The Rocks Centre
Shop 14-15 Argyle St (Cnr Kendall La)
The Rocks 2000 NSW

Entree: $17-$22
Mains: $24-$34
Dessert: $10.50-$14

I should also say that I had a lovely glass of Sauvignon Blanc, and the boy had a bottle of James Squire.And the head chef is Damian Heads, who is one of my favourite chefs in Ready Steady Cook (I loooove all cooking shows!).

Guylian Cafe

Shop 10 Opera Quays
3 Macquarie Street Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 8274 7900

PS I will go back to these places and I will take photos, I can promise you that. Hahaha!


Entry filed under: Eating out. Tags: .

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