Star power headlines a Sudanese-Burmese pop-up eatery
Miranda Otto pretty much kicked-a$$ when she slayed the Witch-king as Eowyn in the Lord of the Rings, and now she’s facing her latest mortal test – opening a restaurant.
Well, Otto is isn’t the star of this vehicle, but rather has a supporting role… as the mentor at The Drummer, a three-day pop-up restaurant in the CBD. It’s a unique eating concept, staffed by former Sudanese and Burmese refugees and featuring their respective cuisines. Yes, we don’t expect Julia Gillard or Tony Abbott to be invited to dinner, but we’re sure Bob Brown will be welcome.
The concept is the brainchild of young entrepreneur Elle Formica, whose idea was among the three winners of the American Express Room for Thought project, aimed at finding ‘big ideas’ in community, fashion and music.
The Drummer will serve lunch and dinner, with specific seating times for each. Expect to see dishes like spicy goat stew with black-eyed beans at lunch, and dinner fare like a starter of Sudanese beef koftas with spiced yoghurt, mains like steamed fish fillets with coconut, tamarind and peanuts, and such desserts as Sudanese crème caramela. The meal price is by suggested donation, with profits going to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, so don’t be a tight-a*se.
We’re also liking the use of eco-friendly tableware. Cups are made of corn, the cutlery is wood, bowls are built of compressed leaf, and menus are printed on seeded paper that can later fill that patch of dirt where you killed your last houseplant.
We’re not sure what Miranda knows about the hospitality biz, but by the look of her videotaped first meeting with Elle, she sure plays the part. “It would be good to not make a really expansive menu, make it quite a select one, so you’re just trying things out.” Bravo. Well, it’s better than some supermodel shouting “world peace”.
The curtain gets raised tomorrow, so we’ll see how movie magic gets translated to the plate. Regardless, it’s not like there’s a wealth of Sudanese and Burmese food in the city. And besides, refugees aren’t exactly getting much love in Parliament at present, so let’s spread some needed goodwill through our stomachs.
When: Wed 14–Fri 16 Sept | 7am–10pm
Where: 72 Erskine St, Sydney
Phone: (02) 8333 0010
Details: Room For Thought on Facebook