02 January, 2008

Twist Cafe Bar

The Boardwalk, Honeysuckle Drive, Newcastle

Breakfast at Twist was more about the journey than the destination. SG and I made the journey in by bike, taking a route my Dad was keen for us to see: along the bike path in Adamstown to the Gully Line, down past the ISC, through the TAFE, then along the delightful bike path beside Throsby Creek, under the Cowper St Bridge and down Wharf Rd to Honeysuckle.

The Honeysuckle development has been in the planning stages for seemingly decades. In the last three years it has progressed far more quickly, however, and now, along with a Crowne Plaza and several waterside residential developments, there is a burgeoning restaurant precinct, which Twist Cafe and Bar is a part of.The waitstaff didn't get off to a good start. We sat at a recently-vacated table, which still bore the remnants of its previous occupants: water and coffee cups and unfinished plates of eggs. Neither of the two floorstaff made a move to clear the table after we sat down and, astonishingly, one came to take our order before any such offer was made (nor had any menus been proffered: we'd been persuing the single copy left behind). After I requested more time and for the dirty dishes to be removed, we looked more closely.

It was already a warm day and with a 10k return ride in front of us we all ended up picking the same dish: pancakes with strawberries, maple syrup and pistachio butter. We also asked for a coffee, a juice and a frappe. The cafe was less than half-full and operating with three floorstaff, one who rarely left the point-of-sale and another permanently behind the coffee machine. What exactly the latter was achieving through this dedication I'm unsure, since our drinks arrived after our meals. My pineapple passion frappe had a very exotic fruit flavour, something like lychee or feijoa. As it turned out, I could have checked an ingredients list to exactly identify the flavour, since I discovered later it came out of a bottle.

The pancakes, regrettably, did not improve my (at that point) only impression of current Newcastle dining. They were chewy rather than fluffy and baking-sodaey rather than sweet. The serving size was generous, with four pancakes each, but as they showed no sign of the batter having been aerated they sat heavily and were actually more than needed. The strawberries, amazingly given the season, added little flavour and the pistachio butter just melted to obscurity.

Unfortunately I wasn't able to sample any different plates to see if the kitchen was performing more admirably on the grills. The saving grace of the morning, which made the meal itself a quite inconsequential element, was the beautiful ride in and this stunning outlook as we ate:


  1. This place is a disgrace! I went there with my friends for a birthday dinner on 9/10/09. One of the dishes served had steel wool in it, it was sent back to be re-made only to be served again with more! In addition the muscles we ordered had no meat inside. We were not offered a discount as there wasn't a "senior member of staff" present to authorise! I would strongly recommend never putting yourself through what we endured.

  2. Hey, sorry to hear you had such a disappointing dining experience. It would be good to see the venues in such a superb dining location lifting their game to bring them in line with modern dining and serving standards. We can live in hope!