It may have been the morning after the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, but that didn’t stop me from heading out west. It was going to be a fun day of pizza making to celebrate The Garden Wests new pizza menu. I was thrilled to experience one of Sydney’s only in-house flour mills in action as pizza maestro, Joe guides the selected pizza makers through to a wood fired pizza perfection.
The Garden at Wests Ashfield Leagues, is giving the Inner West a slice of its Italian heritage with the launch of a new menu featuring an expanded set of classic pizzas and gourmet collection, new farm-to-fork venue.
We were greeted with a refreezing prosecco cocktail followed by a warm welcome from Executive Chef, Oliver Heath. Whilst pizza was on the agenda, they do have plenty of other options available that will certainly make your mouth water. There is even a children’s menu fit for any fussy eaters that we know of. Check out “Kids Tuesdays” featuring entertainment from Kozi & Pinky, balloon animals, face-painting and free ice-cream with every kid’s meal.
The Garden restaurant was almost like the Garden of Eden. Who knew this place existed in a leagues club, I originally thought it will have more a sport club feel, I was totally wrong. It was a relaxed homely feel, almost like being in the countryside, plus The Garden is all about sustainability. Chef Oliver explained the paddock-to-plate (farm-to-fork) concept, where seasonal fresh produce and great flavours are used and nothing is wasted.
Back to the pizza, the dough is made in Sydney’s only in-house flour mill and topped with the best local and seasonal produce with a hint of traditional Italian cooking techniques. Warning: pizza dough tossing is not easy!
House favourites, including the ever popular ‘Aussie prawns’, are joined by the more adventurous ‘Vegetarian calzone’, a folded pizza base stuffed with mozzarella, ricotta, roasted pumpkin and walnuts, and the ‘Meat calzone’ including ham, salami, Spanish onion, The Garden tomato sauce & buffalo mozzarella.
The man behind the new menu is The Garden’s specialty Pizza Chef, Joseph Abboud, who has been perfecting the art of pizza for almost ten years.
“We do everything by hand,” Joseph said of the labour of love that goes into every house-made pizza at The Garden. “Milling our own flour is a painstaking process but the fresh flour that goes into our dough is packed with nutrients and doesn’t leave a lasting bloating that other bases can cause.”
Following the creation and rolling of the dough, the pizza is lathered in The Garden’s house-made tomato sauce that uses nothing but sun-ripened tomatoes, garlic and olive oil. Following a generous helping of seasonal toppings including house cured meats and fresh cheese, the pizzas are hand delivered into the wood-fired oven.
“The flavour of the wood really adds another dimension to the pizza, the natural smokiness brings all the flavours together in a wonderfully balanced way,” he said.
Satisfying the coming seasonal change, the remainder of the new menu features hearty and delicious dishes including the ‘Panko crumbed chicken burger’ with chipotle, mayonnaise, American cheese, tomato & lettuce on a milk bun served with beer battered chips and aioli and an entrée of the ‘Stuffed heirloom pumpkin’ with Highland organic feta cheese, walnuts & cumin.
Those sweet of tooth are also in for a treat with the launch of a visually theatrical melting ‘Chocolate sphere’ filled with seasonal fruit compote, chocolate mousse, mint sorbet and milk chocolate sauce that envelops the dish at the table, sure to be dubbed one of Australia’s most ‘Instagrammable’ desserts.
The succinct but delicious dessert menu showcases patisserie chef Matthew Abbott-Williams’ classical European training and passion for sweet artistry.
The Garden Wests
Wests Ashfield Leagues Club, Level 2, 115 Liverpool Road, Ashfield NSW 2131, Australia
T: 02 8752 2000 | E: email@example.com | Online Bookings
The Garden Wests @thegardenwests @thegardenwests