Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Across the Border: Kings Cross: Bars: Fountain Cafe

I'm sub-titling this post as ''Bars'' rather than ''Food'', because I would definitely go back to the Fountain Cafe to drink but I wouldn't make a visit just to eat. I started drinking here only a few weeks ago when I discovered that it's loner-friendly and offers two drinks for the price of one until 9pm weeknights. That's about $7.50 for two beers, which isn't bad if you aren't in the mood for a pick-up pub.
It really is a good place to go for a drink when you happen to be on your own and thirsty, because you never have to fight for a table and its prime location on the bend, where Macleay Street and Darlinghurst Road meet, means there is lots of people- and car-watching to be done.
That voyeurism includes watching the countless tourists that like to photograph themselves in front of the El Alamein Fountain on the edge of Fitzroy Gardens:

So when my locally-based friend, Sapphire Tenzing (no relation of Sherpa), was up for a balmy summer evening drink al fresco last week, we chose The Fountain Cafe, because we had no energy to seek out a rare, highly coveted outdoor table at the Darlo Bar or Green Park Hotel. 
We began by ordering four glasses of white wine. As you do.
There isn't a wide selection to choose from on the happy hour menu, but the Rothbury Estate Semillon Sauvignon Blanc seemed like a better bet than the Lindemans. And the first two glasses went down quite well.

We decided to order food to soak up some of the alcohol, but I must admit we didn't have much faith in the kitchen, so it took us a rather long time to make a decision. The cafe is open from 7.30am to 11pm and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. I will have to ask my friend, Ruby Molteno - The Queen of All Day Breakfasts - to try out their bacon and eggs, because I'm sure they would pass the test. The lunch offerings include sandwiches and burgers, while the ''all day'' dinner menu is made up of salads, pastas, pizza and ''Asian dishes''. We eventually settled on the grilled dory with chips and salad for me, and for Sapph, a Moroccan lamb pizza, which we had spied looking good on another table.

The fish arrived in a somewhat unpleasant, rich butter sauce. It was advertised like that on the blackboard so I only have myself to blame. I scraped most of it off and ate the fish, which was dry and unexciting.

The pizza, on the other hand, was quite delicious and enough for two people. The lamb wasn't chewy and there were refreshing blobs of yoghurt and rocket leaves scattered across the top.
I think we ordered about three or four more glasses of wine, but I don't recall exactly, because by that time night had long fallen and the Fountain Cafe staff wanted to close. 
We left a good tip before we were booted out on to the street and at that stage we probably should have gone home to ready ourselves for work the following day. Wise decisions are never made at 11pm, when you have had a few drinks. So we decided to kick on. 
We ended up at the Goldfish Bar in the Crest Hotel on the Darlinghurst Road strip. But it's probably best not to bore you with the drunken details and instead leave you with this lovely festive photograph of the fountain:

Fountain Cafe
18 Darlinghurst Road
Kings Cross NSW 2011
02 9358 6009

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