283 Ponsonby Road
(09) 360 2122
Tuesday - Thursday, Saturday
6pm - late
12pm - late
It’s at the end of Ponsonby Rd known as Three Lamps, accessed through a fluorescent-lit arcade and up a flight stairs. The odd location might better suit a dentist, but that is the beauty of it – you don’t expect what’s waiting behind that gentle sliding door. The space is a plush combination of crisp white, taupe and blue. The atmosphere settles itself upon you with a hush and a sigh.
Sid Sahrawat is the owner and visionary here, but I feel the title of artist is also quite apt. The degustation menu is changed each month, you may choose between a five or a nine course option, but there is no a la carte offering. For the brave, know that the true artistry of Sid Sahrawat is best experienced at his Tuesday Test Kitchen, different each week, when diners reap the benefits of Sid and his team’s latest culinary experiments.
At Sidart I’ve eaten simple-seeming dishes like grapes with goat’s curd that have blown me away. I’ve tasted terakihi with buttermilk and leek, and a tender, rich quail with jerusalem artichoke and mandarin. I cannot even think of celeriac without remembering Sid’s smoked puree. Once I had a dessert of licorice, chamomile and five spice meringue that was so playful and surprising that the memory of it still makes me smile. The simplicity of the hero ingredients listed on the menu gives no indication of the hours of preparation that go into every element of every dish. You would be almost completely in the dark if it weren’t for the incredible waitstaff, currently led by award-winning sommelier Amanda Rogers, who guides her guests through each meal with incredible poise and ease.
Dinner at Sidart is always an adventure, a masterclass in the art of food, wine and hospitality.
In 2012, we held a Tasting Club at Sidart, where Chef Sid chose six of his favourite dishes from previous Tuesday Test Kitchens. It was unforgettable.