Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Novotel Sydney on Darling Harbour wears its age well. Bright and light with a relaxed, modern feel, it has a stunning view of the city skyline and a new(ish) restaurant that makes the most of its striking backdrop.
The Ternary has been open for just on a year and has played a large part in the hotel’s transformation. Not only has the restaurant provided the hotel with a fresh, new look, it has also delivered big improvements in the quality of its food and beverage.
The Ternary is now the top-ranked hotel restaurant in Sydney on Trip Advisor, as the hotel’s general manager, Richard Holt, proudly declared when the Australian Society of Travel Writers met there for lunch last week.
Adding to the cause for celebration, the hotel was the first that the Accor hotel group opened in Australia. Accor has gone on to become a formidable presence in Australia’s hotel scene, so the opening of Novotel Sydney on Darling Harbour was certainly the start of something big.
The name of The Ternary has yet to grow on me but it’s meant to reflect the restaurant’s three distinct dining offerings – the Grill Kitchen, the Asian Kitchen and the Wine Bar (Grill, Wok, Wine). All three are integrated into a single space with floor-to-ceiling views of the city skyline.
Chefs work in front of the guests, the sizzle of the grill and the flames of the wok providing plenty of spectacle and a sensory experience. The open kitchen means that chefs can interact with guests as they cook, immersing patrons in the energy and colour of the kitchens in full swing.
Guests are invited to mix, match and share dishes from across the three menus.
Highlights include sirloin steak from Cape Grim cooked on the grill, Betel leaves filled with smoked flaked salmon with salmon pearls and fried shallots, whole baby barramundi cooked in the tandoor, and Mango creme brûlée with champagne sorbet.
The restaurant has a great cellar and an Enomatic system for keeping wine fresh, enabling guests to choose from nearly 100 different wines by the glass or bottle.
The menu for the ASTW lunch drew praise both for its creativity and for how beautifully cooked the dishes were. We started with naan bread with smoked yoghurt and mango chutney, followed by an entrée of Atlantic salmon cooked in the tandoor and served with a spiced pea puree and grilled watermelon.
Mains were an alternative serve of lamb and chicken. Any disappointment at getting the chicken was quickly dispelled as it was perfectly cooked and beautifully accompanied by cauliflower puree, fondant potato and grilled asparagus.
We ended with coffee and petit fours, including an amazing watermelon and pistachio slice that, let me tell you, is alone worth a trip to The Ternary.
Novotel Sydney on Darling Harbour
100 Murray Street, Pyrmont
Sydney NSW Australia
Tel: +61 2 9934 0000
The Ternary is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner. To book, visit www.theternary.com.au
With thanks to ASTW member Mike Smith for allowing me to use his photo of the petit fours, and to Accor for the image at the top of the post.