Two Decades Of Icebergs Dining Room And Bar

Cotoletta Saltimbocca © Jason Loucas, from Icebergs Dining Room and Bar 2002-2022.
Cotoletta Saltimbocca © Jason Loucas, from Icebergs Dining Room and Bar 2002-2022.

It’s hard to think of a venue that shows off the beauty of Sydney any better than Icebergs Dining Room and Bar, overlooking the historic Bondi Icebergs Pool to the Pacific Ocean beyond. It’s a view you could never tire of.

Owner Maurice Terzini opened the restaurant in 2002, with the goal of offering food that was “more developed than classic Italian”. “I felt that the Italian message was always about homemade sauce and sausages, but for us it was more about design and art – there’s so much more to Italian culture,” he says in Icebergs Dining Room and Bar: 2002-2022, published by Simon & Schuster.

The lavish coffee-table-size book is a tribute to Terzini’s 20 remarkable years at the helm of Icebergs, a place where the food and the drink, the service and the design, all has to be irreproachable to be on a par with that hero view. 

“I wanted flavours my parents would recognize in food they would never cook,” says Terzini in the intro to this collection featuring the best-known recipes from two decades of head chefs, cocktails from the award-winning bar and playlists from summers gone by.

The saltimbocca recipe featured here, typically done with veal, gets a whole new interpretation from Paul Wilson (head chef 2012-2014) with crispy prosciutto, sage and garlic butter applied to a meaty free-range pork chop. The cherry marmalade, made with fresh Australian cherries, contrasts beautifully with the rich, buttery, salty pork.

Icebergs Dining Room and Bar 2002-2022

The book offers an insight into what makes Icebergs such a success, from the architect behind the design, to Terzini’s signtaure rules of hospitality, to recollections from the six chefs who have left their stamp on the restaurant over the years. Part retrospective, part cookbook, it’s a stunning memento for anyone who has dined at Icebergs and fallen in love with the whole experience, or indeed for those who haven’t eaten there but who would like to capture some Sydney ambience.

Last year, 20 years to the day of its first service, Icebergs Dining Room and Bar re-opened after an eight-month renovation. Under head chef Alex Prichard, it continues to turn out fine food inspired by Italian coastal dining and Terzini’s Italian heritage. It has a new private dining room and custom walk-in fridge.

Television chef Nigella Lawson famously declared Icebergs her “favourite restaurant in the whole world”. Neither it nor the book come cheap, but they certainly make a statement.

Buy your copy of  Icebergs Dining Room and Bar 2002-2022 from Australian-owned Booktopia.

Recipe For Cotoletta Saltimbocca

Serves 4

8 slices of prosciutto
8 large sage leaves, plus extra
4 x 200g free-range pork cutlets, rind removed
30ml extra-virgin olive oil
50g unsalted butter
lemon juice, to taste
radicchio leaves, to serve

Sage butter
250g soft unsalted butter
1 bunch of sage, finely chopped, extra
4 garlic cloves, finely grated
lemon juice, to taste

Cherry marmalade
200g fresh cherries, pitted or whole
125ml (½ cup) balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp honey
2 star-anise
1 clove
zest of ½ orange
250ml (1 cup) cabernet sauvignon
juice of 1 orange
1 tbsp cornflour

1 To make the sage butter, combine all the ingredients in a bowl, whipping by hand. Place onto a sheet of baking paper and roll into a sausage-like shape. Twist to enclose at each end and freeze until firm.

2 To make the cherry marmalade, place the cherries in a small, deep saucepan over medium heat. Add vinegar and cook until reduced by half. Add honey and cook for 5 minutes until liquid is reduced to a syrup. Add spices, orange zest and red wine, then reduce heat to low and simmer gently for 15 minutes.

3 Combine orange juice and cornflour in a bowl to form a smooth paste. Gradually add paste to cherry mixture until it coats the cherries. Reduce heat again and cook for a further 5 minutes. Set aside to serve with the pork.

4 To prepare the pork, lay out 2 slices of prosciutto on a work surface, overlapping to make one larger sheet.

5 Place 2 sage leaves and a 1.5cm slice of sage butter in the centre of the prosciutto. Top with a pork cutlet, then fold over the prosciutto to enclose. Repeat with remaining prosciutto and cutlets. Set aside in the fridge until ready to cook.

6 Preheat oven to 200°C. Heat oil in a wide non-stick pan, add pork cutlet parcels and some sage leaves to the pan and cook quickly to seal. Place the pan in oven and cook for 4 minutes. Baste with juices and cook for a further 4 minutes.

7 Remove pork from pan and allow to rest for 2 minutes. Transfer to serving plates. In the same pan, add the butter and cook over a medium heat until almost browned. Add a squeeze of lemon and spoon over the plated pork chops. Serve with a little marmalade on the side and radicchio leaves.

Recipe and images from Icebergs Dining Room and Bar 2002-2022 by Maurice Terzini. Food photography © Jason Loucas, Drink photography © Nikki To.  Published by Simon & Schuster Australia and reproduced with the publisher’s permission.

This story originally appeared in PS News.

**Enjoy many more delicious recipes from our Food Wine Travel files here.**

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