Aristotle’s is a new little gem in the Neutral Bay restaurant scene, transporting diners to a stunning Mediterranean Greek oasis. Located just off the busy Military Road, a mere stone’s throw from the city, it sits on a cute little side street filled with other cafes and restaurants that injects an energetic buzz and atmosphere to the leafy suburb.
The restaurant entrance outside sees visitors greeted by two lovely white couches and tables, perfect for some alfresco dining in the warmer summer weather, with classy gold throws, and elegant dark timber tables. The amazing light filled white interior is very cool with sky high ceilings becoming the centre piece of the room. Architect turned restaurant owner, Maria, has been inspired by her artistic and structural background, using it to create a gleaming stylish interior. The ceiling space is wonderfully innovative with incredible metal sphere shaped lights dangling from above, and gorgeous golden ropes arranged in an immaculate fashion. The whole vibe is Mediterranean chic, and a subtle nautical theme.Along one wall sits an elegant brown quilted booth, whilst the other wall is lined with fun port hole turned mirrors with a bronze rim. The striking centrepiece has to be the bar, with its brass bench, high bar stools, and fun accessories such as a golden pineapple, gold lamps, marbling and vintage glassware, the whole venue is stunning.
Food is an essential part of the Greek culture which joins many together, allowing the to enjoy united. Greek food is renowned for being served in a plentiful fashion, as the centrepiece to all family and celebration events. It was only fitting we enjoyed a taste of the menu in a similar way, over a splendid Sunday lunch, we feasted to our heart’s content over delicious offerings created by their Grecian chef.
Their cocktail menu is extensive, with imaginative twists on classics and inventive new creations aptly given some cheeky names! Enjoying a cocktail from their little bit of sparkling menu upon arrival, we sipped on the Greek Goddess ($17). This refreshing light drink comprised of Sipsmith Sloe Gin, Campari, Peychaud’s bitters, pink grapefruit, Greek Prosecco, decorated with some exciting vanilla pashmak fairy floss to crown the top. To begin, we started with some mezes, the Marinated Olives ($6), homemade Taramosalata ($9) and Chargrilled Pita Bread ($3). Taramosalata is a cod roe dip and happens to be one of my favourite dips of all time! For me to really enjoy it, it must be done well– none of this supermarket mass produced business! My favourite has always been the one available at David Jones’ deli section, a light pink, creamy dip, that serves itself as an essential for every family function. However, I think that Maria’s chef may need to start supplying me personally, as his version blew me away. A nice thick texture, we learnt that the commercial dip is actually dyed pink and that the reason today’s was instead a light beige colour– is that it is in its truly natural state! Crowned with some salty salmon roe and served alongside some warm freshly made pita bread straight from the oven, it was enchanting!
Haloumi can tend to be hit and miss at restaurants- often over-cooked to become tough like rubber. I generally love it, with all its ridiculous saltiness, it is often my guilty pleasure. Aristotle’s Haloumi ($16) was something else entirely! The homemade cheese was incredibly stretchy, salty, cheesy and gooey just as cheese should be! Accompanied by pomegranate, red grapes, honey, balsamic, oregano and walnuts for an added crunch, the diverse flavour combination jumped off the plate. My favourite element was the honey sauce, which wasn’t too overpowering but created an addictive combination of salty and sweet together!
As a huge Octopus fan, I was thrilled to see the Chargrilled Octopus ($18) as one of the menu items. A huge gigantic tentacle marinated in chilli, garlic, parsley and lemon was a simple and clean dish. The tentacle somehow remained amazingly tender, as often the detriment of cooking octopus is that it can become tough and hard– luckily this was not the case!The Barbequed Cypriot Sausages ($18) were a performance piece, delivered to the table engulfed by vibrant red flames. The fire on the dish had everyone’s eyes glued in surprise whilst the sausages cooked before our eyes. Paired with some delicious house made creamy tzatziki, the Greek yoghurt, cucumber and garlic dip complemented the sausage perfectly. This dish was yummy, however perhaps a little too fatty and oily for my liking.
To give us a little lighter vibe, a Greek Village Salad ($14) was a nice change, served From the Garden part of the menu. Greek salads can often be simple and uninteresting; however this went far beyond that! Filled with an abundance of tomatoes, cucumber, capsicum, olives, Spanish onions, oregano, feta and a light citrus olive oil dressing, the mix of herbs and spices enhanced the salad beyond its usual ways. The produce used by the restaurant was the centrepiece here, obviously incredibly high quality with tomatoes so gloriously sweet and delectable!
The Spit-Roasted lamb ($28) consisted of large chunks of lamb meat with an Athens kafeneio butter on top as well as some tzatziki and lemon. The lamb was a flavoursome dish, however perhaps a little tough and dry for my liking. It was definitely enhanced by the welcomed addition of the restaurant’s appetizing tzatziki! Alongside the lamb, we enjoyed snacking on the Feta chips ($9) with oregano. Delivering an excellent crunch with that amazing outer shell of golden goodness, they could have been made even better by a more plentiful sprinkling of feta (not that I really needed any more cheese!)We finished the amazing feast on the perfect note with some of Aristotle’s Pistachio Baklava Cigars ($9). These were presented at the table in a handcrafted amber wooden cigar box, which was engraved with the Aristotle emblem. The little dessert cigars of sweetness were an impeccable finish to the meal. Made with the lightest crispy pastry, piped with an amazing pistachio and baklava infused creamy mousse, and dusted with chocolate crumbs, they crumbled with one bite, causing a glorious mess! We were naughtily forced to lick our fingers of the scrumptiousness!
Aristotle’s is the perfect new haunt to enjoy an amazing Greek feast with all these dishes featured in their Aristotle’s Table menu which for $55 per person, provides great value! I would recommend this stunning new restaurant not only for its tasty food and cocktails, but also the fabulous interior décor and amazing host Maria, and service! Be sure to visit soon!
1/24 Young St, Neutral Bay, Sydney NSW
Tel: (02) 89696900