After a 17 month restoration project the Gowings building has been resuscitated back to life with the QT Hotel – a hotel, spa, bar and restaurant. Inside you will find the Gowings Bar and Grill – a European style brasserie serving up seafood, steaks, woodfired meats and rotisserie fowl. Try and time your visit for Friday at lunch for the pinot and suckling pig special, if you can.

Located between the historical Gowings building and the State Theatre, the Bar & Grill has that staged New York Broadway feel to it.  Walk on in and you will taken by the slab of tuna hanging by its tail cut wide open and red raw. Hello… fish bits.

With its extensive menu, it is difficult to decide what to eat and what to forego. Everything looks like a win and equally very expensive. $38 schnitzel anyone?

crab cakes

For her entree Ms G takes on the hot spanner crab cakes ($19). I’m given a taste and already I’m hit with food envy. It’s the combination of the beautiful crumbs, fleshy crab pieces and the creamy aioli that I would happily come back for.


Sydney Rock Oysters ($5 each)

steak tartare

I’m always a sucker for steak tartare ($29) but I found myself slightly disappointed. There is no questioning the quality of the ingredients but it wasn’t the traditional steak tartare I had in mind. It was far more creamier and lacked the tang and pep I was hoping for. The shoestring fries, surprisingly came out as the hero of this dish.

yellowfin tuna tartare

Tartare of Yellowfin Tuna ($18)


Clockwise, from left to right we have the Iceberg lettuce drizzled with diced red peppers, anchovies and a seeded mustard dressing ($10). This was one of my favourite sides with the dressing taking hold as the centrepiece and the anchovies surprisingly having an equal part to play. The steamed spinach ($11) was simply served as mentioned. While the sauteed mushrooms ($10) was simply delicious.With the mushrooms doing what mushrooms do best, being completely soaked in a beautiful sauce.

nicoise salad

Tuna nicoise salad ($35)


I ordered the 1/2 spiced duck which somehow didn’t occur to me at the point of ordering that it would actually be just that… half a duck. So I probably should’t have had this all to myself. Oops…

Nonetheless, the skin of the duck had a nice crisp rather than a piercing shatter. The duck – a simple yet tasty number ($44) but at the price point, I was hoping for something a little bit more.


Ms G couldn’t pass up the fresh doughnuts ($16).

We’re talking a ‘fresh’ deep fried fancy doughnut dipped and tossed in sugar. I stole a bite and it was as expected, crispy, hot and fluffy with a lovely sugary crunch.

apple crumble flavours

Apple Crumble Flavours – Sweet & Sour Apple Empanada, Peanut Brittle, Salted Caramel Ice-Cream, Apple Pickle, Caramel Cider ($19)

I loved how this dish was rested in front with all its deconstructed apple-ly parts. Looking up, I saw a fresh pot of hot caramel sauce dripping onto my sweet and sour apple empanadas forming thick and luscious ribbons. Going back and forth, back and forth. Ughh…

It came with a side of the most mind blowing salted caramel ice cream, I have had in my life. That when it came slightly melted, I had to complain and ask for more. Rationale being that it was melted. But because it was so bloody good, I had to ask for more. I simply couldn’t have any of it wasted, it was that good!


Block of Amedi Chocolate ($9)

The service at Gowings is attentive and friendly. The menu is exciting and boasts a meat eating orgy at a relatively high price point. Whilst the food is tasty at that price tag it’s hard not to feel the damage to the hip pocket. But for the right occasion, you can cast a blind eye and open yourself up to the energy and theatre of it all.

Welcome to Gowings Bar and Grill, for some sleek and ss ex’y stuff.

Gowings Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

  1. grabyourfork says:

    The duck looks amazing, but gah, those donuts! Yum!

  2. chocolatesuze says:


  3. Tina @ bitemeshowme says:

    Shame that some of the dishes just didn’t live up to the name. I’d happily eat half a duck though would feel so guilty! Hahaha.

  4. Those crab cakes! Those donuts! My eyes seem to gravitate towards anything deep fried woops…

  5. 5 bucks an oyster – ouch! The duck sure looks scrummy though

  6. Whilst it all looks great, it’s a shame every dish didn’t shine. When the fries were the hero rather than the steak tartare, that’s not good at all. I love my tartare, so I share your disappointment!

  7. peachcordial says:

    Hmm I’m tempted by those crab cakes. I’ve been itching to go to Gowings, but the price has put me off. Perhaps for a special occasion…

  8. I love a good iceberg lettuce salad and this one looks great. i must try.

  9. i must try those spanner crab cakes soon! only realised last week how many time i’ve actually walked past the Gowings building but never really paid enough attention to go inside

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s