One Ford Street opens within Balmains Cricketers Arms Hotel [gallery]

26 October, 2015 by
Aoife Boothroyd

One Ford Street has officially opened within the recently refurbished Cricketers Arms Hotel Balmain, offering an Italian inspired menu created by chef Sam Bennett.

Bennett – previously of Bourke Street Bakery, Glebe Point Diner and Fix St. James – spent the last 12 months travelling through Italy where his appreciation for honest Italian cooking and high quality produce was further cemented.

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Bennett’s menu for One Ford Street includes the likes of pickled olives, cured meats, handmade pasta, bread and mortadella, with larger share-style plates comprising chopped veal ‘cipriani’ & pizza crusts; just cooked tiger prawns with sugar snaps, & caramelle; and lamb t-bones with pring fregola salad, mint and almonds. A number of different ‘Trust the Chef’ share-style options are also available.

“Having just returned from a year long working holiday in Italy, I was inspired by the big, simple flavours and beautiful ingredients and I really want to bring a style of cooking based on what I was seeing in regional Italy and interpret that here in Australia – non fussy, casual feasting food using amazing, fresh produce,” says Bennett.

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The Front of House will be led by Fabio Dore (former winner of Gourmet Traveller Magazine “Maitre D of the Year” award) of Popolo in Rushcutters Bay. Dore has put together an impressive boutique wine list encompassing all the Italian regions as well as some local interpretations of Italian varietals alongside an Italian craft beer range. 

Design wise Publican Tim Condon –who purchased the former Monkey Bar site in March this year and returned the venue to its original name, The Cricketers Arms – collaborated with designer Humphrey Edwards to produce a minimal style and clean palate for the new space, which is complemented by pared back blonde wooden walls and polished concrete flooring.   

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“One Ford Street is a celebration of simple, rustic Italian cooking served in a casual environment…somewhere you can stop in for a bowl of fresh pasta and a glass of wine for lunch on your own, or settle in for a feast with family and friends” says Condon.

 The 50-seat space also features an outdoor courtyard complete with a pergola, hanging baskets, potted plants and greenery to create a Mediterranean-style garden. The outside dining space also includes an outdoor private dining room for 12.

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