The Gidley, the new restaurant from Liquid & Larder’s James Bradey and Warren Burns, has arrived
Inviting you to come and discover an old-school atmosphere with new world charm under Sydney’s CBD, the basement space, on the corner of 161 King Street and Elizabeth Streets, has been transformed into an intimate haven of plush furnishings and quiet corners that echoes the service, charm and opulence of years gone by.
Make your way down dimly lit stairs, leave your coat and phone at the door and settle into the Lounge, a bar without a bar, with a stiff drink in hand. Allow the jovial spirit of golden-age hospitality to unfold around you, before sinking your fork into prime cuts, while sipping on juicy reds in the lavish Dining Room.
If indulgent fare with generous serves of cheek whets your whistle, The Gidley’s your ticket.
Taking influence from New York and London’s famous steak restaurants and supper clubs, Executive Chef Pip Pratt’s concise menu is short, rich and robust.
Showcasing Australia’s exceptional Riverine Black Angus rib eye, guests can order one of three ways: classic chargrilled rib eye on the bone cooked over ironbark and charcoal; spinalis steak (the succulent cut when removed from the cap), or standing prime rib roast, cut two ways – the thick Gidley Cut (700g) and English cut, thinly sliced (300g).
Three sauces of truffle, mushroom and burnt butter, Green Goddess and confit garlic mustard are ready to be ordered and slathered or spread. While sides go from light(er) broccolini with braised leek, shaved brussels and Caesar salad, towards rich: three-cheese truffle mac and cheese and potato gratin.
Whole flounder with butter and lemon
After something else? Maybe whole flounder with butter and lemon (filleted tableside); brick chicken with bread sauce or savoury pumpkin pie with whipped goat’s cheese may be more your jive.
Desserts toe-dip into American classics; pecan pie with ice cream or cheesecake, perhaps. And if you’re just stopping by, the Lounge offers a condensed menu of fine cheese, nibbles, oysters, and for the hearty, the Gidley Burger, a double beef pattie with cheddar and pickle and the option of bacon and egg, or both.
Jonothan Carr (Archie Rose, Kittyhawk, Door Knock and Burrow Bar) is manning the cocktails and spirits list that’s focused on ‘straight and stiff’. With no bar top in the venue, drinks are prepped pre-service, batched and bottled, and are finished in front of guests in the Lounge or tableside.
The Gidley's Negroni for Two
There is, of course, the obligatory martini (served on a silver tray), classic cocktails such as a negroni for two or the unexpected, such as toasted chamomile spritz or banana split Old Fashioned.
Wine director, Alice Massaria, who won best new wine list for Bistecca, has curated a list that highlights Australian wineries doing their best to respect vintage, nature, sustainability and biodiversity from the west to east coast. To complement the Gidley’s old-world charm, there are also plenty of labels from the great vineyards of Europe, and a few from New Zealand and the US to add breadth and depth. The perfect list, you might say, for a long lunch.
There is also an added reserve wine list of twenty consecutive vintages from Cullen Wines’ iconic ‘Diana Madeline’ dating back to 1996. Most of these bottles are extremely rare, with only one bottle per vintage stocked, and many won’t be available again once gone.
Interior architecture and design firm Tom Mark Henry worked alongside the Liquid & Larder team to bring to life the design of The Gidley. Taking cues from the namesake of the venue, Governor Philip Gidley King (1758–1808), the space has been completely reimagined with nods to Australian colonial and federation times with ‘tram’ interiors also evident in the design and referenced throughout the venue, making note of the street’s former transport pathway.
Dark timber veneer, herringbone floors and moodier stone finishes as well as carpets in more traditional patterns complete the palette. Velvet used throughout in both upholstery and drapery creates a sense of luxury, while unexpected colours are used on the banquette and booth seating adding brightness to the restaurant. Drapes and curtains add privacy, while lighting may include ornate wall sconces and candles with single pin lights above each table.
A private dining space, The Norfolk Room, complete with its own bar, seats up to 20 and will be available for events or exclusive use shortly.
Lounge: Tuesday to Saturday from 5pm; Friday from 12pm
Dinner: Tuesday to Saturday from 5:30pm till late
Lunch: Friday 12–3pm
Images: Dominic Loneragan