What to do in Sorrento

We are often asked at the Bistro what to do in Sorrento so here is our guide to the area, click on the links to see more information….

First stop is always the Point Nepean National park, one of the best things about living down here is the amazing pristine ocean environment we are surrounded by, this is a chance for visitors to feel envious of our lifestyle and hopefully we can convince a few of them to come and join us in our sea-change life.

For a quick caffeine pick me up and a delicious baguette to enjoy on your sight seeing stroll or as a reward for after your walk, drop into Le Capucin in Portsea, they have the French hospitality and are our go to for an early morning snack on our way to park. Be aware that you cannot take any pooches with you to the National Parks but if you fancy a dog friendly stroll the Cliff walk and Artist trail in Portsea is a great option.

Stand up paddle boarding is a low impact water sport that is right up our alley, there is a place on the front Bay beach in Sorrento over the summer months that gives you lessons and allows you to hire boards for a small fee, this is a great way to pass a few hot hours in the sun, remember to wear sunscreen.

If you are seeking adventures in the deeper water Judy and her team at Polperro dolphin swims are the people that you should try to spend a few hours with,they do small scale tours out to see the resident dolphin in the bay and are the bench mark for sustainable enviromentally concious tourism. We have always really enjoyed the trips with them.

In the main street we have a couple of favourite boutiques, Deb’s is stuffed full of some amazing designer frocks and the ladies that work there are always enjoying a glass of Sparkling and some oysters in the evening at our bar. Emia fashion is great for the younger demographic that are looking for a bit of fun styling on the beach and Cape Merchants have a huge range of interesting furniture and some great fashion, in particular we love the Irish knits…

And of course drop in to us at Bistro Elba to enjoy a meal when you are in town, we would love to see you.


Barramundi with pink pepper corns

Russel Norman is a London restaurateur who has a great grasp of morden dining, we love looking at what he is doing on the other side of the world and often use him for inspiration. In this case we have just directly copied one of his dishes as it is so delicious we thought we could not improve it.

We are using Humpty Doo barramundi fillets which is a divergence from the original recipe but the fish is so delicate it really works in well in this technique. 

The recipe is simple, you just poach the fish in a mixture of 50% fish stock, 25% orange juice 25% lemon juice with a big slug of olive oil, seasoning the fish well. place it on heat, bring up to a simmer, turn heat off, put on lid, wait 30 seconds, pop in pink pepper corns, garnish with chopped mint, dill and parsley.... eat! yum

Here is a link to the Polpo book and you should go and ask Jane at Antipodes bookstore for a copy it's a great read with heaps of simple recipes.



Arts in restaurants

Our whole restaurant is inspired by a book that I borrowed from James. It is a book called "reflexions" and the author is a guy called Richard Olney. It is essentially an memoir of his life in France, it informs many of the things that we do here at the bistro. Richard was involved in the lives of many of the worlds most influential food people over many years and I find his uncompromising search for excellence and quality inspirational also he has a way with language which is quite rare.

Anyhow the point to this is that we here at Bistro Elba are always looking for ways to bring that love of culture and the arts that we have to the fore front of our guests experience

One way that we celebrate the arts is with our monthly Literary lunch. We always strive to create a wonderful extravagant luncheon for the people clever enough to snare a ticket to these events. We always make sure that we have time in our work day to sit down and listen to the conversation with the author at every lunch, in fact at one of the lunches last year I found out that the author had worked with the before mentioned Mr Olney and told me that he was a really difficult character...

Next Friday we have Mark Brandi whose book I have not read (yet), but I am looking forward to hearing about as it is set in Western Districts of Victoria. 

I came in early to the restaurant today to do a bit of menu planning for the lunch next week and I am quite excited about what we are going to cook for everyone. If you have not attended a literary lunch before but like us love reading, books and all things interesting, please don't feel shy, come, we would love to have you for lunch.   

Literary Lunch
Friday 29th July 12:30 pm - till 3:30pm
Three course lunch with wines
$85 a person
ph. 5984 4995
or just pop in to book