Progressive Dinner in Surry Hills

Late last month I was invited to a “Dinner on the run”, a progressive dinner organised by social concierge Lime & Tonic.

A progressive dinner is a bit like a pub crawl, except that it involves food in addition to the booze and that the after effects are not as painful! In addition to that, Lime & Tonic selects the best dishes of the restaurants and the only thing you have to worry about is rock up there and enjoy yourself. That night we were going to Sugarcane, Bar H and Longrain, all a stone’s throw away from each other in trendy Surry Hills.

Sugarcane entreesPrawns  on rice cakes & Som Tam with crispy pork

The entrees at Sugarcane were delicious and plentiful: I was surprised at the number of dishes that kept coming our way! The highlights were: Prawn on rice cake with caramelised sugarcane, coriander, lime leaf, lemongrass, chilli and ginger, and a fresh and crunchy Som Tam (green papaya salad) with crispy Pork.

SquidSalt & Pepper Squid: always a winner

Sugarcane kitchenSugarcane’s kitchen in action – Chef Milan Strbac (right)

You also couldn’t beat the Crispy chicken with shallots & plum sauce either, which didn’t last long on the table!

ChickenCrispy chicken with shallots and plum sauce

Time flew by quite quickly and we were surprised to hear it was already time to move on to the next stage of our progressive dinner: the mains, which were going to take place at Bar H.

The place was buzzing, but there was a big table at the end of the room reserved for us, next to which Bar H chef Hamish Ingham himself was sitting.

After ordering the drink of our choice (wine or beer), we were served two dishes.

First a steamed Snapper fillet with ginger and shallots, which I really enjoyed: very fresh, light and subtle, with beautiful flavours.

FishSnapper fillet with ginger and shallots

The second one was a Dong-po pork (pork belly & pumpkin) in a clay pot. The pieces of pork were tender and fatty and went really well with the pumpkin.

Pork BellyDong-po pork (pork belly & pumpkin)

Both mains where to be shared, but the portions were very generous and we struggled to finish them. They also came with steamed white rice and lovely green salads to balance all that protein!

We were then headed to the final stage of the night, which sounded promising: cocktails & dessert.

NegroniNegroni at Longrain’s Bunker Bar

A short walk later, we found ourselves at Longrain and were led to the Bunker Bar in the basement, where we were served the cocktail of our choice. I chose a Negroni, which is my favourite cocktail at the moment, and this one was a fine example of it.


The bar also offers a selection of food, such as chicken wings, pad thai, pork buns, pork skewers… But we were there for the dessert, which turned out to be a big highlight of the night for me: a verrine of Vanilla tapioca, young coconut jelly, mango sorbet and black sticky rice, topped with roasted coconut. I LOVE that type of dessert, and find the exotic fruit flavours, the textures of the sticky rice and the tapioca very refreshing and exciting. It certainly is a change from what I’ve been used to with French desserts, even though more and more pastry chefs now work with Asian flavours in France (but not yet to the extent of what we can see in Australia.)

We stayed there chatting and drinking our cocktail for a while on the comfy couches, enjoying good company: it was a very pleasant evening I have to admit!
It also was a great way to mingle through the evening, as you could sit next to different guests every time you changed restaurants.

Check out Lime & Tonic‘s website to find more information about how to become a member and access all the offers.

The French Wench attended the Progressive Dinner as a guest of Lime & Tonic.

40a Reservoir Street
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Sugarcane on Urbanspoon

Bar H
80 Campbell Street
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Bar H on Urbanspoon

Longrain Bar
85 Commonwealth Street
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Longrain Restaurant & Bar on Urbanspoon

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