Sometimes you might be having 'one of those days' where nothing is going your way and you can't think of anything better than turning that computer off and storming out of that office and just downing a nice glass of wine to take the edge off the day that has unfolded over the past 10 hrs. You might be thinking that it sounds like someone has a few alcoholic tendencies but I think that at times there is nothing better than to sit back and unwind with good company over a glass of wine. Feeling a bit 'meh' one evening we decided to try a place in Darlinghurst that we have walked past a few times before. Time to Vino is a beautiful little wine bar in Stanley St, Darlinghurst. With nothing but red wine on the mind what more of a fitting place to go.
We stroll in and get seated in the back, the area is a small room dimly lit and with hundreds of books and magazines about wine for your enjoyment. It really sets the scene for some unwinding. At this stage we were feeling a bit peckish so we asked to have a look at the menu to order a few things to have with a few glasses of wine. While we were pouring over the menu it just so happened that there were quite a few things that sounded really good. What was meant to be a glass of wine or two ended up turning into a beautiful meal.
But the important task at hand was getting the wine sorted. From what I remember we ordered a carafe of 2007 Poliziano Sangiovese from the Chianti Region of Italy, needless to say my favourite italian wine. It really did hit the spot might I add. To start appeasing the growing appetite that was on hand we ordered some marinated olives.... and pork belly.....and arancini.....and slow cooked ribs......and..............apple crumble!
Orignially we wanted to try the gourmet toastie sandwiches that Time to Vino has been famous for this dinner. Yes, toasted The olives ($6) were an assortment of varieties and we were off to a great start. Marinated in oil, vinegar and herbs - a good friend for the wine.
The crispy pork belly ($15 / 4 pcs) served with pear went down a treat, the words 'crispy' and 'pork' always manages to light up the room. The saltiness of the pork and the sweetness of the pear was well balanced but there is nothing better than sinking your teeth into crispy pork crackling wherever you may be. One of life's finest experiences I would have to say - eating crunchy salty crackling..you cant get any better than that!
The arancini ($12) were amazing. Small bite sized pieces that were lightly coated, stuffed with rice and gorgonzola cheese served on a bed of napolitana sauce, yes kids - gorgonzola everyone's favourite guilty pleasure. Just plain yummy and can fix whatever headache/toothache/emotional mess you have got yourself in. Cue 90's emotional music. "Nothing Copares to you" by Sinead O'Connor is fitting music for this Arancini.
Looking back in hindsight the Ribs were an impulse order ($15).......one that was most definitely not regretted. The meat was tender, the serving was large and the sauce was sweet, sticky and just so flavoursome you couldn't help but want to lick your fingers afterward, and maybe even the plate. So good and and it melts off the bone and if you look closely at the photo you can see the sweet sticky sauce dripping off.
Having finished the food and the wine and feeling quite relaxed and content we couldn't help ourselves so we just had to order desert. We felt somewhat compelled to do so given that the food was so so good. We couldn't go past the Apple and Hazelnut Crumble served with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream ($12). It comes out warm in a brown clay pot with ice cream slowly melting over it. These pictures do not do it justice because I simply just wanted to dig in before Demos ate everything. The filling was piping hot and the apple was tart and sweet and the crumble added that nice texture making a beautiful desert overall. It was such shame that I had to share it with Demos. I'll know for next time.
So my advice is that the next time you feel that it's become all a bit to much and you are thinking that it's 'A Time to Kill' just put the pens down, turn those computers off, say goodbye and know that it's "Time to Vino!" You know you want to!
Time to Vino
66 Stanley St Darlinghurst (02) 3380 24252
Open Tuesday to Saturday 4pm til Late