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“Underwhelmed”
Review of Quay Restaurant

Quay Restaurant
Ranked #57 of 6,101 Restaurants in Sydney
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$25 - US$100
Cuisines: Australian, Contemporary, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, After-hours, Breakfast, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations
Neighbourhood: The Rocks
Reviewed 12 August 2014

My second time to Quay, and a total disappointment.

The good: a quarter of the dishes, specifically the crab congee and the smoked pork. The view. The restaurant itself is understandably well appointed, although the bathrooms retain their original features and none of the charm.

The bad: almost all the dishes - although quite 'nice' - failed to inspire. A restaurant at this level needs a wow factor, and there was none. It would still likely fail to meet the generally lower expectations pre 'masterchef effect'. The goose was very tough and oddly distasteful (charred skin was just burnt skin), quite unexpected. It seems to have been replaced with duck now. The snow egg signature dessert didn't seem freshly prepared/assembled with that just-taken-out-of-the-freezer feel. The matching wines, although 'nice' (there's that word again) weren't a perfect match for the dish. Service was from several different staff, impersonal, and almost patronising at times. Perhaps they were bored from having to deal with mainly international tourists that seem to dine here. Couples were seated against the wall away from the windows and the view, and large groups of international tourists with children were seated against the windows. The location is surrounded by construction, so a pre or post dinner stroll was anything but romantic (I concede that obviously this is outside Quay's control, just unfortunate). The price is incredibly high for the quality of the experience.

Having been to over a dozen similarly pitched fine dining restaurants home and abroad, this was by far the most disappointing. The staff attentiveness, kitchen inventiveness, and general allure Quay had years ago seems to have departed.

Just a tourist attraction now, not a dining experience.

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2  Thank 6Mileshigh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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944 - 948 of 1,746 reviews

Reviewed 12 August 2014

Had lunch at Quay and it was sensational. Words cannot describe the food so I won't even try. Peter Gilmore, you are a genious. Views are fantastic especially during the day as you can see from the bridge to the city skyline. Would go back in a flash!

Thank Gidget3001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

My friend Iand I dined at Quay to celebrate a special joint birthday. Whilst it is certainly not a cheap dining option it is undoubtedly a memorable and very special one. I was concerned that the service staff would be snobby but in fact they were all friendly, approachable and extremely helpful. We both had different dishes for all four courses and each one was divine; we wanted more of it all. My only slight disappointment was that we were charged for the tea and coffee at the end of the meal, perhaps this could be included in the overall price of the dining experience. I will certainly return on other special occasions.

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Thank MonkeyFace6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 August 2014

I was supposed to have lunch at the Quay restaurant today, booked 3 months ago for my wife’s birthday, but I had a phone call during the previous week to inform me that my “reservation has been changed”, that they can no longer offer me lunch on that day. She explained that the restaurant is being used for a private function, and would I like to make another booking at another time. After expressing my horror that a private function could take priority over prior bookings, the woman finally admitted that it was function “associated with the owner of the restaurant”. I was appalled. No compensation was offered, merely the offer to change the booking to another date.

Leon Fink, the owner, should know better than to treat paying customers in such a manner. It’s the sort of behaviour that one might expect of a local pizza joint, not a 3-hatted restaurant of this calibre.

Whilst I rate this restaurant as Terrible on this occasion for its extraordinary behaviour to me, I’ve previously regarded it as Excellent in terms of its food and service. Its service on this occasion was offensive to me. And I have to wonder if any other customers were also treated so badly on this day.

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11  Thank youngphil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2014

We visited the Quay on our last night in Australia. The food was good, but quite overpriced and over-rated. Looking back not a single dish stood out enough to mention. We had the tasting menu with matching wines from around the world (the most extravagant option available). Nevertheless we have enjoyed the food which I couldn't say about the service. The service was arrogant and patronising, with our water so full of himself that we could get any sense out of him. It was clear he felt so superior for same bizarre reason that it was rather unpleasant. Another waitress throughout the night was helping herself to an occasional (or maybe not...) glass of wine. I can understand her - if I had to work there i probably would also need a lot of wine to go through the night with some staff being so arrogant. I would come back to give food another try, but the service is really putting me off. So undecided as yet. It would be 3 stars, however given the price tag it can only be 2...

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1  Thank gastroExpress
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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