Sails on Lavender Bay is perched on the shores of Sydney's magnificent harbour, a spectacular sight during the day and night. Sails is the perfect venue for corporate or private functions, hosting up to 100 guests for sit down functions and 120 for cocktail functions. Private dining for groups of 11 – 20 can also be accommodated in the private dining room.
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Waterside dining rarely gets better than this. They say "a picture is worth a thousand words" but, in this case, I would have to disagree. Photos just don't do this restaurant justice. It is only when you are seated, looking out towards Sydney Harbour, with the Harbour Bridge looming above and Luna Park sparkling to the left, that one can fully appreciate the beauty of our stunning city.
Even after the sunset, the Harbour took on another, yet equally spectacular, form. We could see silhouettes of bridge climbers perched on the upper arch of the Habour Bridge while the harbour in front was abuzz with jet cats speeding hoards of city workers home to burbs.
270-degree glass windows allow diners uninterrupted views from every seat in the restaurant. The interior does not have much character – it is simple and elegant and yet comfortable. Despite being a fine dining restaurant, the staff are vivacious, making guests feel relaxed and at ease.
Renowned for their cocktails, we ordered a selection of classics such as mojito and caiprioska, along with a citrus blush – as recommended by the waiter. The caiprioska let the team down slightly however, the mojito and citrus blush were standouts. An entree of seared scallops with a carrot and ginger puree continued our glowing approval – the small dollop of cumin yoghurt combining the dish. The Indian flavour of the dish was unexpected and, as a table of spice-lovers, made the dish more pleasurable than we imagined. The freshly shucked oysters were as they should be – fresh and untouched, with just a drizzle of mignonette dressing. A main of Jerusalem artichoke and potato ‘feuilette' made me appreciate vegetarianism more than ever, while the roasted duck breast with lentils was perfectly balanced.
I'm the first to dismiss the North Shore as a place for fine dining. It is not for its lack of restaurants but rather it is the feeling of sameness about them all. After a night at Sails, my attitude has changed. Sails is at the top of my list and not just for Sydney, I would recommend it Australia-wide.