Watts on Crown- Hamish Watts- new restaurant

As it was a balmy Sydney evening we decided to sit upstairs at one of the only two tables out on the balcony overlooking the street at Watts on Crown. There is food pedigree here with Hamish Watts having worked with Neil Perry at Rockpool and at Kensington Place in London.

Watts on Crown - new Surry Hills restaurant
Watts on Crown - new Surry Hills restaurant - ravioli

The food: For an entree my partner ordered seared scallops with pea puree and mint vingarette – well cooked and tender, they got it right with the mix of flavours. For a main, I went with the roast marlin, served with asparagus and sherry reduction – the marlin was moist with a crisp golden crust and a distinctive fish flavour as you want from marlin.  The gentle sweetness from the sherry reduction was perfect, but the baby beets around the edge of the dish had become a bit dry.  For a main, my partner went for the roast pumpkin and goats cheese ravioli with pinenuts and sage – good flavours, the pasta was fresh and soft like homemade pasta should be.  The thing that let this dish down was the silvers of parmigano reggiano which seemed to have been shaved a bit too far in advance. As a result, it was also dry like the baby beets with the marlin.

Watts on Crown - new Surry Hills restaurant - roast marli
Watts on Crown - new Crown St Surry Hills restaurant - scallops

We finished off with expresso and a cheese platter – an English cheddar, French soft cheese and a goat’s cheese rolled in ash from South Australia – this was perfectly acceptable, but pretty uninspiring.  The wine list is a mix of Australian and some imported wines – with a selection available by the glass.  We asked for a recommendation to match our food – a rose from Krinklewood Vineyard  in the Hunter and Cote du Rhone red – both fine tipples and well matched. The friendly waiter who looked after us for most the night seemed to have trouble getting things right – like the lack of cutlery, only one napkin, no olive oil or butter served with the bread, don’t get me wrong – the front of house staff seem very nice but that is not enough.  There must be a level of understanding of what has to be done to make it work -and that was lacking. 

The verdict – Watts on Crown in Surry Hills is bistro fare – still showing that it’s newly opened and needs to get it front of house sharp and really on the ball.  But this is well prepared food in a smart looking restaurant – so with a bit more work and creative thinking with the menu, it could be there.  Upstairs is better if you are looking for classy surrounds – street level is more casual with an open kitchen and a bar.


Watts on Crown

368 Crown St

Surry Hills NSW 2010

sydneycool rating ♥

Watts on Crown Website


Watts on Crown on Urbanspoon

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