I fall off the map at QVB. Rarely going further south along George St - why would you as it is nothing but a giant cineplex, tacky Asian accessory shops and adult book exchanges - I was hesitant when my friend gave me directions to Assembly saying it was "behind KFC and down the stairs". How wrong I was. This hidden pocket of awesomeness, kitsch Asian diners and hole in the wall eateries, is responsible for Assembly Bar. Like all happening bars of late, Assembly is decorated with rustic bric-a-brac and invites that thrown-together-with-not-much-effort-but-look-how-cool-I-am vibe. Although completely indoors, it has an "outdoor" area, which gives the impression one is outside by creating a lane way feel. The big blackboard says: no smoking… Perhaps the two sweetest words in the English language when ordered that way.
It is a Friday night, and Assembly is busy and noisy.. Apparently it is much quieter midweek. Tonight, we farewell Matt the American as he sets of for China. He's the sort of kid who doesn't really have concrete plans, just ideas and impulses. God Bless him.
Rare to find a beer I have never heard of, I order a Doss Blockos on there recommendation of the barman. Brewed by East 9th Brewing Co (a Victorian company), Doss Blockos is named after a New York apartment block that housed squatters (and brewers) in the 1990s. It is a pale lager that is bright and fresh on the palate with hints of floral. Just the way I like it.
I am starving. After working nearly twelve hours straight and with no food in my belly, it is time to fill it. I fill it with the belly of another creature… The pork belly sliders ($14) are a perfect way to distribute this uber fatty cut of meat; hidden between the soft cheeks of a brioche bun, the pork is brought to life with a spicy sofrito (Spanish hot sauce) and red cabbage.
The chips, almost rival Newtown Hotel for the best chips in Sydney, but come in a close second… Although the cheese and truffle dipping sauce is wickedly decadent and makes one want to clutch their fat rolls and laugh a little.
Definitely on the "have to go back" list, I look forward to sharing the Assembly love and surprising friends…
"Where are you taking me?"