Long Time No Sea: A new food adventure south of Bermagui

Long Time No Sea: A new food adventure south of Bermagui

3521 Tathra-Bermagui Road, Barragga Bay

0415 108 625 or ltnsrestaurant@gmail.com


Will Wade and his partner Sofie have taken the plunge and opened what can only be described as a delightful restaurant. Will has an impressive track record. He has worked at Noma in Copenhagen and more lately at Zanzibar (the much praised and hopefully soon-to-be-reopened restaurant in Merimbula). Long Time No Sea is very well and minimally decorated and the view to the north east across the bush to Barragga Bay is spectacular. We were taken by the old gramophone hiding in the corner and we were able to listen from an eclectic selection of LPs that included Boz Scaggs, Daryl Hall and John Oates, and Engelbert Humperdinck. We might forget about Engelbert. But we played a track or two from Boz Scaggs’ 1976 album “Silk Degrees”.

While the musical options were retro, the food decidedly was not. We had booked as soon as we found out about these guys. Sofie called during the afternoon to confirm our booking and to tell us the menu and to check whether we had any problems with it. Now, I don’t know if it’s because I am getting older or just crazier or maybe idle but I like to go to a restaurant where they feed you. In this case, Will uses local ingredients (some sourced from Kyle Levier who is well-known locally as a grower). Will knows what’s fresh and what’s available. He can decide what I am going to eat. And the idea that Sofie called us to tell us the menu was just wonderful.

Will and Sofie will be getting a liquor license in a matter of days but we took a bottle of 2015 Soumah Pinot Grigio which perfectly complemented a summer menu that was light and fresh and zingy and easy on the palate. We started with both gnocchi and squid in a dish could be named after either. This was served in a tomato and onion sauce and topped with Manchego cheese. I have a soft spot for Manchego so I knew we were on a winner.

Above: Trevally, a fish that is firm of flesh and delicate of flavour. It was served with zucchini flowers, kale and broccoli in an aromatic broth

The fragrance from the kitchen (you can see, hear and smell the culinary action) heralded the main course. This was a perfectly cooked Trevally, a fish that is firm of flesh and delicate of flavour. It was served with zucchini flowers, kale and broccoli in an aromatic broth. On opening the presentation we found a grilled peach and a dill pickle which added an interesting dimension. Will had cut a few tiny individual flower stamens from a flowering dill plant to complement the dill pickle. That level of attention to detail tells you that the chef cares about what he is doing and cares about how you will interact with it. This was a dish that looked, smelt, felt and tasted as if it had been cooked with passion.

Desert did not disappoint and was slices of pineapple infused with oil, pressed by Will, from kaffir lime leaves. This was served with coconut cream and lime ice cream and finished with grated and grilled coconut. If I had to choose from a menu I might not have picked this desert and I would have been a poorer man as a result.

Will and Sofie deserve to succeed. He is clearly very good in the kitchen and Sofie is delightful at front of house. She knew what ingredients had been used and how everything had been prepared. And often that makes all the difference. You can help them succeed by booking right now.

Now the holiday season is coming to an end we understand that they are planning to offer separate breakfast and lunch menus between 0900 and 1400. At the moment they have a brunch menu. They are open for dinner on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights when bookings are essential.

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