Colin Fassnidge – chef, family man, motorbike rider and tweeter extraordinaire! – although of late, his tweets have somewhat turned towards the niceties of daily things in life and less of the hot Irish blood that runs through his veins.
Colin Fassnidge – Dublin born Irish chef arrived in this fair land in 1999, with stints at that very cool fine dining Est restaurant in Sydney CBD and at Banc. In 2004/5 he started at Four in Hand pub restaurant in Paddington and in a short time it became the very good ‘Four in Hand Restaurant’ with a very nice local pub next door. His philosophy on food being that classic ‘nose to tail’ thinking, which is that of many a great chef around the world – Colin Fassnidge has gone on to be embraced as one of Sydney’s, if not Australia’s, chefs to watch!
Colin Fassnidge and business partner Joe Saleh now have Four in Hand, Paddington Arms and the latest 4 Fourteen Restaurant in Surry Hills sydney, which in 18 months has become one of Sydney’s “IT” restaurants to be seen in!
But on a serious note the “IT” restaurant thing is a lot of bull shit! It’s because he’s a great chef with a dedicated and talented team around him, like Head Chef and business partner Carla Jones. But the key has to be great cooking in a well run kitchen in a well run restaurant and to date a well run business and all this has to be led by a chef that has what it takes and Colin Fassnidge has got that. Someone once said that Fassnidge was not media savvy – that really made me laugh out loud, as great chefs know just how to work the media and when. Anyway that has changed somewhat in recent times – with his prominence on ‘My Kitchen Rules’ on Channel 7 which airs 7 March – to name one in a handful of media appearances.
The Food at 414 Restaurant:
Ham Hock and Cheese Croquette, Mustard Crème Fraîche – small bits of ham encassed with cheese in croquettes alongside a tear drop scoop of mustard creme fraiche.
Black Pudding, Prosciutto, Apple Sauce – soft luscious black pudding – with hints of dark chocolate and chorizo coming through to balance the minerality of the black pudding – layered on the proscuitto and fine batons of apple.
Citrus Cured Cobia, Frozen Fennel and Celery – pieces of sashimi cobia ( known as well as black kingfish) with celery leaves, braised celery sticks and topped with shaved frozen fennel juice. This was such a delightful dish to look at and even better to taste. It showed a lighter more modern take on Fassnidge’s repetoire.
Ocean Trout, Citrus Stock, White Beans, Fennel and kale. We chose the celeriac as accompaniment – cooked 3 Ways – the smoothest of puree, pure smokiness of the baked celeriac with a fluffy white inside and paper thin strips of fried celeriac.
For dessert – Pain d’epices with fresh figs and ginger beer sorbet
4Fourteen Restaurant delivers a warm welcome, sharp attentive service from knowledgeable staff, well cooked food and an interesting wine list – and they can really make a mean Bloody Mary.
Wine list: 8/10
414 Bourke St, Surry Hills 2010