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Thursday 23 June 2016

Osteria Balla REVIEW + The Star, Sydney: #nevergrey

This winter, don't hibernate.

The Star, Sydney has launched a clever (and cosy as) campaign called 'Never Grey' (follow the social media convo at: #nevergrey and #thestarsydney) and they are ensuring Sydney doesn't go cold on winter nighttime options.

Following on from a beautiful, well attended launch at Sokyo Lounge at The Star, Sydney, a VIP event attended by The Star’s Winter Ambassadors, Daniel MacPhersonGrace Huang and Monika Radulovic and celebrities including Kris Smith and Kate Peck, guests were treated to a glimpse of what winter will bring to The Star with specially made canapés, colourful cocktails and Adriano Zumbo’s famous macarons served throughout the night.  

Check out the upcoming winter schedule:

The #nevergrey program at The Star embodies a range of experiences on offer for the Sydney sider looking for fun, and the visiting tourist wanting to be dazzled by her (and by 'her', we mean our fair lady Sydney, who always puts it on, no matter the weather) proving Sydney winters are 'never grey' at The Star precinct.

Think: mouth-watering signature dining events from The Star’s celebrity chefs, live entertainment and the best seat in Sydney to watch worldwide sport. I just LOVE dining at The Star... it's a cornucopia of eats, whatever the mood dictates - it's there.

Says The Star’s General Manager of Marketing & Entertainment, Melinda Madigan says, “The Star’s new all-of-property winter offering is unlike any other experience for our guests. With everything from exciting live entertainment, worldwide sports 24x7, divine hotel and spa packages and a sophisticated food and beverage offering including three different ‘hatted’ restaurants and award winning bars, The Star is the ultimate destination to play. Plus, we’re excited to announce the largest cash give-away in the past decade at The Star, with $8 million up for grabs.”

Josie's Juice was guest at the renowned Stefano Manfredi restaurant, Osteria Balla at The Star, Sydney, and it was very bit as luxe as you'd expect, with attention to detail of paramount importance, just as is the Manfredi standard.

Greeted by courteous, efficient staff, a sommelier who truly knew his stuff, and a beautiful menu to please lovers of Italian fare, and devout Italophiles, Osteria Balla is highly recommended as the premium choice at The Star for a pre theatre dinner.

With three guests in tow, two of us ordered from the delicious pre theatre menu, designed to feed you in true Balla style, having you experience the kind of service the Manfredi stable is renowned for, though have you feel not rushed at all (yet expertly moving the night along for you, so you make your show on time). Even the somm was all over it - assisting us with choosing the right wine for our tastes, guiding us a tad, but leaving us to continue to choose what we liked.

Here are the delicious dishes we feasted on:

Pork head terrine with Jerusalem artichokes and mandarin mushrooms

Fresh burrata with marinated mushrooms - before

Kingfish crude with citrus and dried green olives
Ravioli of pumpkin and amaretto, braised leek and seeds, 

Pan fried cobra with fennel and sautéed chicory

Wagyu beef cheek with parsnip, watercress and balsamic

Steamed snapper with cavolo nero, pine nuts, sultana and roasted onion broth

Orange tart with almond crunch

Raisin sponge with mascarpone cream and chocolate
A dining experience at Balla is a must when you visit The Star, Sydney. The open kitchen, the best dining view of the sprawling Pyrmont in front of you (I have dined here several times, during daylight, and as the sun goes down, for dinner, and I have loved each experience differently, including the ambience, and of course the on point food, every single time. It's consistent). Top of The Star, Sydney must eat list.

Back onto what's happening at The Star!

June is Wood, Fire & Smoke Month as The Star’s signature restaurants harness the elements to create dishes that are guaranteed to ignite the senses, while July will celebrate Truffle Month showcasing the rare delicacy in exquisite style through delicious degustation menus crafted by The Star’s top chefs. As a keen diner of Italian origin who can smell the distinctive scent of truffles kms away, it's my kinda month.

When Josie's Juice went back to dine post- #NeverGrey launch, it was State of Origin night, and that's what I love most about The Star: there's so much happening on any one night, and you can  take a bite of it all, or be low key and enjoy elements you're keen on. It's up to you how the night unfolds.

As 'Sydney’s Home of Sport', fans have been enjoying the world’s best sporting events of late, including State of Origin, the UEFA Euro 2016 and more.

Lets not forget the luxe accommodation (I always get the urge to just STAY the night, and wake up to a hotel breakfast... they're always more delicious), and a world renowned casino.

For more information on winter play at The Star, visit www.star.com.au/nevergrey 

Throughout June and July, The Star has curated a series of one-off dining events at its own signature restaurants, along with a jam-packed calendar of live entertainment and luxurious hotel and spa packages: 


(just past) Monday 20 June 
From 7pm

$125 per person / $200 per person with wine/sake pairing. Booking is essential. To book, call 02 9657 9261.

Sokyo Degustation 
Chef Chase Kojima and his team of renowned chefs will each create a unique heritage inspired dish that takes you on a delectable worldly journey guaranteed to leave you wanting more. Be delighted by the expertly curated degustation menu including Malaysian style kingfish sashimi, braised eggplant, fermented bean curd and tofu crumble, and the chocolate cheesecake sandwich with pumpkin ice cream. 

Thursday 23 June 
From 7pm

$75 per person. Booking is essential. To book, call 02 9657 9109.

Dinner with Luke Nguyen 
Take a seat at Fat Noodle and enjoy a feast as Luke Nguyen takes you on a gastronomic journey through East Asia this winter. Luke will serve up sharing platters including cinnamon prawns, Wagyu beef with kaffir lime leaf, Saigon chicken and beef ribs to name a few. 

Sunday 26 June 
From 6.30pm

$185 per person, and $265 with matching champagne. For reservations 
phone 1800 700 700.

Oyster Farmer Dinner at BLACK by ezard
Guests will enjoy a four-course degustation menu created by BLACK by ezard’s executive chef, Dany Karam featuring caviar, fillet Wagyu and a dessert of warm couverture ganache, banana sorbet, hazelnut mousse and cookie crumble. Throughout the evening, roving oyster shuckers will serve Ralston Bros’ signature fresh Waterfall and Heritage oysters that are known for their distinctive and pure flavour.

Thursday 30 June 
From 7.30pm

No cover charge.

Rock with Laughter – Rock Lily 
The comedy night will be hosted by media personality Mikey Robbins and headlined by Australian comedian Elliot Goblet, best known for his character Jack Levi.Support acts include Eric Hutton, Umit and Casey Talbot. Enjoy $6 Tooheys New and Hahn Super Dry, house wines and selected spirits offer from 5pm till midnight. 


Saturday 9 July 

To purchase tickets, visit www.marqueesydney.com

DJ Tigerlily at Marquee
One of Australia’s top female DJ’s will be bringing down the house this July.

Tuesday 12 July 
From 7pm

$95 per person. Booking is essential. To book, call 02 9657 9129.

An Italian Affair 
Join us in a celebration of the chef and the pizzaiolo as Osteria Balla Manfredi’s Gabriele Taddeucci and Pizzaperta’s Gianluca Donzelli combine their skills to create unique dishes from Italy with love. Be impressed by the snapper fillet with spicy lucariello tomato broth and olive cracker, or the focaccia with suckling pig porchetta, white radicchio and mustard. 

Saturday, 16 July
From $21.60.

To purchase tickets, visit www.marqueesydney.com

Havana Nights – Havana Brown at Marquee
Australia’s favourite female DJ hits the decks at Marquee Sydney.

Saturday 30 July 
From $21.60

To purchase tickets, visit www.marqueesydney.com

Joel Fletcher at Marquee
Melbourne producer and DJ will be returning to Marquee with his electrifying sound. 

8 June – 28 July 
Monday - Thursday

The Darling: from $355 per night. Astral Tower & Residences: from $289.

Mid-Week Warmer at The Darling or Astral Tower & Residences

Add a touch of luxury to your winter with a mid-week warmer stay at The Star’s premier accommodation offerings The Darling and Astral Tower & Residences. With a complimentary bottle of wine on arrival, enjoy 20% of signature dining restaurants at The Star, including Sokyo, Osteria Balla Manfredi and BLACK by ezard. Be further pampered at The Darling Spa where all treatments will be 20% off including the Skin Caviar Facial or, for the romantic, the Date Night Couple’s treatment. 

Bookings via https://www.star.com.au/sydney-hotels-and-spa and 1800 700 700. Quote Promo

June & July 

$220 (normally $300)

Winter Skin Saviour Spa Offer
Relax with a 90 minute salt scrub, body wrap, oil full body fusion and massage. 

Ends 7 August

Celebrate with friends with a $99 bottle of Veuve Cliquot at the main gaming floor bars or $12 espresso martinis available at all The Star’s iconic bars

Ends 7 August

Champagne Weekends 
Every weekend is cause for celebration with $135 Champagne Weekends.  Let BLACK by ezard spoil you with champagne when you enjoy a three-course lunch and gorgeous harbour views. 

Ends 7 August

Pillow of Dreams at Pizzaperta’s 
Enjoy Pizzaperta’s ‘Pillow of Dreams’ Nutella pizza & 2 coffees for $20

Ends 7th August

Winter feasts
Brighten up your lunch plans with a Cantonese feast at The Century - $49 for 8 dim sum, 3 lunch dishes and rice.

Ends 7 August

Quickie Express Lunch
For a quick but fulfilling lunch, Osteria Balla Manfredi is offering a $25 express lunch

Menus to each dinner showcase are available upon request. For more information on winter play at The Star, visit www.star.com.au/nevergrey. 

Follow the social media conversation here: @thestarsydney #nevergrey

For more information or enquiries, visit www.star.com.au or call 1800 700 700.

Josie's Juice and her guests were announced to staff at The Star, Sydney, and Osteria Balla, and meals were semi contra.

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