The original Kitchen by Mike opened in the Sydney suburb of Rosebery in 2012 and featured a menu of local, seasonal produce, much of which was cooked in an enormous wood-fired oven. An unusual canteen-style restaurant housed in a furniture warehouse, Kitchen By Mike was credited with kickstarting a nationwide trend of similar dining experiences, each offering inventive food served up on trays, buffet-style, in a cool setting.
The menu at the new airport venue, also named Kitchen by Mike, includes plenty of favourites from the original (look out for Mike’s celebrated wood-fired oven, too). Find breakfast items such as buckwheat toast served with cured vegetables, bacon butties with Mike’s own ketchup, and granola served with poached pears and natural yoghurt. At lunch you can choose from items such as the crispy pork belly with piccalilli and watercress, a salad of wood roasted pumpkin, pomegranate molasses and spiced yoghurt, or kurobuta ham with mash and Cumberland sauce.
“We source produce locally, follow the seasons strictly and change the menu regularly," says Mike McEnearney, the award-winning chef behind the venture. You won’t find a printed menu at the airport either, he says. “We chalkboard it." The canteen also serves Australian wines, cold-pressed juices and health tonics such as kombucha. You can even take a little taste of Australia onto your plane with a Fly By Mike pack, which features your choice of menu items packed into a flight-ready meal tray.
Alternatively, head into Sydney’s streets to find more of McEnearney’s cooking – although the original Kitchen By Mike recently closed, McEnearney is has announced a new and improved version will open in the neighbourhood of Surry Hills later this year, while diners can enjoy McEnearney’s trademark honest, flavourful cooking at fine dining hot spot, No. 1 Bent Street.